Yesterday Mark made a commitment to work with me, Martina and Wind The PunkAss Pony for one month. Every day for this one month, Martina is going to ride the pony and the responsibility will not be 100% mine. Amazing.
Today Mark insisted that we watch a movie before going to the barn, so it was hot as dog breath when we finally got out there. I promised Wind a short ride, walking and trotting, then treats, his fan and hay if he was good. If was bad, no treats, no hay. This may sound ridiculous but on the most basic level I am communicating my intent to the pony and making a concrete plan for all of us humans to follow.
I dragged Martina’s barrel saddle out and she rode in that. Extra security. We made a triangle of traffic cones and a barrel for Martina to practice flexing and bending the pony around. Within two or three minutes we saw the twinkle of a smile. By the end of the short ride, as promised, she and the pony were moving beautifully together at the walk and trot. I don’t mean show-ring pretty, I mean team-work pretty. He was listening and she was relaxed and in command.
It was good. He is in his stall now and full of treats, happily munching hay in front of his fan.