Other than long-lining Louie on Sunday, I haven't worked him in any sort of "regular" or "collected" work for a couple of weeks while we were on our hiatus for the field trial and while I was preparing to take my board exam. So, naturally we should be a bit rusty. . . well "a bit" is definately not the right word to use. I rode Louie today (a "normal" ride) and it was as if it was only our 3rd or 4th ride ever. No concept of headset or bend, steering was really lagging, lazy would be better than how I would describe his trotting. Granted, it was 85 degrees and HOT today, but I can't get over how difficult and stiff that ride was! Yuck! I guess we have some work to do. . . back to the suppling exercises.
Of course all of this was after I got a phone call from Sandy saying that my friend is going to a show this weekend and she thinks I should bring Louie and ride a class. Ha! Yeah right! I would love to bring Louie and hang out, maybe do a halter class or something, but I would just want to go and relax and have fun getting Louie used to the new surroundings (though I'm pretty sure he'll have NO problem with it after what he did for me at the field trial). Unless there's a walk-trot open all age class (which I doubt), I find it hard to believe that we'd be even close to ready to make an appearance in the show ring under saddle yet. Maybe if we had progressed from where we left of with our training 2-3 weeks ago. . . but probably not now. We still don't have our right lead down very well yet. . . But that's okay. I am in no hurry. Again. I. Am. In. No. Hurry.
So we will slowly work our way back to the condition and training level we were at before this break we've been enjoying.
On a more refreshing note, Louie got a bath today. Soap and all. I wanted to get out some of those little straggler winter hairs that seem to keep coming off on the girth and in other parts. Ooh was he one shiny beautiful little pony! He wasn't too fond of me spraying the water anywhere close to his face, but that's okay for now. He stood pretty nicely, and I shampooed his tail really well (he's a little bit of a tail rubber), rinsed it extra well, and conditioned it. I haven't done the sheath thing quite yet, but I squirted some cold water up there- Louie was thinking, gee, thanks Mom. . . We dried off while eating some grass- it was a perfect ending for Louie. :)
ETA: I stand corrected- the weather man said it was 97F here today. I knew it was a good day for a bath. I'm glad we had a light ride too!