Monday, September 29, 2008

Monday Make-Up

I had to go to a make-up lesson today at 11:30. It was a pretty fun lesson, and I learned a few important things.
They were using the extra horse that they'd originally reserved for me, so I had to wait around and have them bring me a pony in from the pasture. The pony was absolutely adorable ("a little fox," as the instructor later described her), and her name was Jasmine. She looked like a nice chestnut at first, but I noticed what looked like a very faint dorsal stripe while I was grooming her. Hm. She was quite sweet, even though she pinned her ears and nosed at me while I did her girth. 
I was the first person to finish tacking up, so I walked Jasmine down to the indoor arena and waited for someone to give me some instruction. A woman came out into the ring and told me to go ahead and mount. She disappeared for a while, and I'm so glad she did. 
Jasmine didn't want me to mount her. She would take a step or two away from the mounting block (She was definitely short enough for me to mount her without a block, but I always try to use one for the sake of my hip.) and refused to back up when I asked her to move back to it. I put the block aside and attempted to mount without one. Jasmine, once again, walked off, and then the saddle slipped. I could've sworn the girth was tight enough, as I'd just adjusted it for the second time. I made it to the ground just barely on my feet, and then I had to tack up all over again while fighting with Jasmine to make her hold still. I eventually got on, though.  I would've been terribly embarrassed if anyone had been watching me :) 
We worked at a walk and trot on the flat for a while, and the teacher even asked us to drop our stirrups at the walk. I was so happy. Then, she asked us to do a posting trot over a single pole. That was easy enough. She made a little crossrail after everyone had been over the pole twice, and then we jumped the crossrail twice each. That was also easy, so I was happy. Then, I realized that we were going to jump some really big jumps. They honestly weren't very big, but they weren't crossrails; they were the biggest jumps I've ever jumped. 
First, we had to cross the arena and jump two jumps in a row. They were far apart, but they were big for me. To add to everything, Jasmine got really excited when she realized we were jumping. The first two weren't so bad. They felt HUGE when Jasmine jumped them, but everything was okay. I just grabbed mane, gave her all the release she needed, and tried to keep myself balanced. The second time around, we did three jumps. We had to do the second jump from the first go, then canter around and turn to another jump, and then go diagonally, make a tiny turn in the line, and go over the third and final jump. 
That was an absolute disaster for me. On the first jump, I don't know what happened. I got popped up, which hurt my hip really bad, and I had to circle Jasmine after it to collect myself and get her back under control. She got really excited before and after that first jump. The instructor happened to be standing behind us when we jumped the second jump. The second jump was even worse than the last. We took the jump and I felt myself shift my weight onto my left stirrup. My right foot came straight out of the stirrup as Jasmine began the jump. Then, of course, she took off after the jump. I had to fight her to get her to stop because I definitely wasn't taking the third jump with only one stirrup. The instructor told me exactly what I'd done and said she thought I was going to fall for sure. I was certainly happy that I hadn't, and then I remembered my terrible lean. Miss Janet was the first one to tell me about it during one of our lessons, and today I realized just how imperative it is that I correct it. I finally got to the third jump, and it turned out to be rather uneventful in comparison to the other two. 
By the way, my name is Ann. Heh, yeah, that's what the instructor called me throughout the lesson :) I didn't catch her name either, so it's okay. 
I would write about my weekend with Stella, but, like the final jump, it was rather uneventful. I cleaned stalls, played with Stella, brushed Stella, and did some horse photography. Oh, yeah, and I also ate figs. 
I get to jump again tomorrow! That's exciting. 

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