Another Nice Trail Ride
I decided to take another trail ride today, however this time I was on my own. I got to the barn around noonish and things were very quiet. I was surprised that there weren't more people around as it was another beautiful, summer-like day. Anyway, I am no stranger to trail riding on my own, but I had been thinking that I might want to ride with others for a few times until Ruby and I were a little more settled in with each other. But since no one else was around and riding today and I didn't feel like another ride in the ring (did that yesterday) I decided to brave the trails alone.
On Friday with Marilyn, we had accessed the trails by riding through some of the apple orchards down the road. I decided to just go up the road and catch the trail from a different spot. Ruby was just great, not spooky at all, she didn't mind being out on the trail alone, just the two of us. We did a lot of trotting and some short bits of cantering here and there. Walked where is was rocky or there were lots of tree roots, or we were going steeply down-hill, but tried to trot a lot otherwise. I took one trail out to the end and then turned around and picked back up the trail that Marilyn and I had been on, on Friday. Well, at one point I must have made a wrong turn because I ended up a little lost. I knew it once I came to a wooden foot bridge -- I know that we hadn't come across that on our ride on Friday. I directed Ruby around it and through the stream beneath it. She hesitated a bit at first because the water was moving (the water we had been through on Friday had been more of the standing variety), but with some encouragement from me she went through it without too much fuss.
We ended up coming out of the trail way down the road from the barn. So it was a bit of a long ride along the road to get back, but I didn't really mind much. It was actually a really nice way to see the neighborhood. Very enjoyable. All through everything, the trails and the road and whatever, Ruby continued to be a star. We were even passed by a loud motorcycle and also passed some loud wood-chipper or some kind of machinery making very "scary" noises and she was just fine. Like I keep saying, a steady, sensible girl.
Once I got home, is was a good rinse off on the wash station for her and lots of carrots and some apple pieces as a reward. Okay, and maybe it was also as a bit of a bribe so that she'll be as in love with me as I am with her -- heh.
So, I've ridden Ruby five days in a row now and feel like we're well on the way to getting to know each other. I really am enjoying her so far and feel very lucky to have her. I've heard far too many stories of people who end up with horses that just aren't right for them, so I'm feeling very grateful right about now. Of course, now I have to really get down to the hard work with Alison in the lessons, starting this week. The hard work has yet to begin.
On my way home I stopped in at the farm stand down the road from the barn to buy a soda. This guy in line behind me noticed that I was wearing riding clothes (and probably also noticed how dirty and sweaty I was) and asked me, "did you ride your horse here???" At first I wasn't sure what he meant and said, "oh I ride at a barn down the road, I keep a horse there. OH! Do you mean, did I ride my horse to the store and have her tied outside somewhere?" and he said, "yes!" -- his eyes all lighted up with excitement. Too funny.