May 31, 2009

Hail!

What a day! Pouring overnight, and then when it finally stopped I got out of bed and brought the horses in. Only to have it start hailing on us all as soon as I'd taken all their rugs off. Put a rug back on each of them and loaded up Gem, Dix, Xev, Coco & Neo to head down to the arena.
Coco loaded very nicely, just walked up the ramp slowly and calmly. Unloaded well at the other end - though her eyes were on stalks a bit! I put her in a small yard and tied her up in there, instead of having her tied to the truck (the arena has open gates right on to a busy road and I didn't want her to take fright at something and pull back, then end up loose on the roads of Wellington!). She was very relaxed, though timid, as I saddled her. And not too fussed when I led her around the arena.
So I decided to hop on and have my second ever ride on her. She backed up a little as soon as I got on her, but calmed down quickly and was happy to walk around.
Almost as soon as I started riding her around we got hit by a massive hailstorm! Coco did very well to not fuss about the crazy amounts of noise and also the cutting hail that was getting us both in the face!
Finally the sun came out again and I tried a little canter on each rein. She still doesn't seem to 'get' the canter... but doesn't put up any fuss - just takes a bit of effort to sustain the canter. She was sweaty after that so I hopped off her and put her away. Very pleased with how she is going!
Gem, after being such a tart to pick up yesterday from Masterton was quite a doll today. She has had about 6 weeks off and you can really tell! She was full of beans. But she behaved and I think she enjoyed being out and about.
Got to do some work on getting her to move forward - at the moment she is so excited to be in work that she's wasting energy with little steps. I have the farrier booked in, and getting some front shoes back on her should help heaps too.
Xev had a ride today with someone else, so no piccies - but she went lovely and calm. Had a few funny moments through the combinations till they worked out what each other was after. But I was really impressed with how nicely the young lady rode her.
By this stage I'd been hailed on about five times and just wanted to get packed up and home before I got hit again, and I think Swifty's fingers were too frozen to use the camera much more. So I gave Neo a pat and told him he could have the day off, then threw a bridle on Dix and rode him bareback.
He was pretty relaxed and happy to mooch around bareback and we got a decent amount of work in before the clouds rolled in again. Managed to get off him and his rug on just before another lot of hail hit!
Loaded them all up and headed home, fed and rugged everyone while we had another massive hailstorm that looked like snow almost. Put Coco out in the paddock for the first time... hope I can catch her later! Kody and Pippa at home were quite happy to get their dinner without having to do any work for it too - slackers!