Over ten years ago when we were in our early teenage years, I convinced her to let me give her a riding lesson on my horse Bo.
We started off with walk, halt, and turning. She was a little nervous, but a good sport.
"Alright, Leah, let's go ahead and try trotting. You're going to say 'trot' and give him a little squeeze with your legs. If that doesn't work, give him a little kick. If that doesn't work, give him a bigger kick."
She said "trot" and gave him a little squeeze. Bo feigned ignorance.
"Okay, Leah, now give him a kick."
She didn't kick.
"It's okay - you're not going to hurt him. It doesn't have to be a big cowboy kick, just a tap on his sides with your legs is all."
She slowly, purposefully, leaned her upper body towards his head, and gently whispered just loud enough for me to hear... "Please trot, Bo."
On to our riding recap.
Tuesday was my first day back in town. I turned Hemie out since I didn't know precisely the last time he'd been exercised. He wasn't particularly hot, so I set up a bunch of jumps. We went on a hack around the property and it was delightful. By the time we got back to the ring with the jumps, a trainer and 3 students had entered and were just starting a lesson....oh well.
Wednesday we did a bareback hack around the property, then he got turned out with my friend's 2 horses and they romped around. I think turning horses out together is so healthy for them.
Thursday I got a short and sweet jump lesson, as I had to pick up my father-in-law from LAX. Hemie had his hunter hat on - relaxed and happy. At one point he started to get a bit behind the leg when tracking right, getting started after standing around after another gal had done a course. Laurie had us "gallop" to get our giddyup going, then keep that throughout the course instead of coming back down to a canter. I'm sure we weren't really galloping but we had a much better pace. Left to my own devices we'll just mosey around the course. Hemie was great and overall it was a fun lesson. We did some bending lines and 2-stride exercises. Good stuff.
Birthday dinner tonight with the sister, so I get a fresh pony for Saturday's lesson!