Dedication is waking up at 4:45am, to feed the boys, to inhale coffee & breakfast, to get my bottom dressed in breeches (with work clothes set aside), to ride a lesson at the break of day.
Jen arrived around, hmm... 6:15am? We walked a saddled & prepared Ransom out to the arena, just as the sun was coming up. I tossed the reins over Ransom's neck to lunge him, and he spooked, or got a mosquito bite on his rear, or got in a habit, or something..
But he TOOK OFF. Ran at a near gallop around the arena, dragging the bridle behind him. This is the same bridle he's already tried to destroy once in the same fashion. He TOOK OFF running. We finally got him caught, but by then, my bridle was in pieces in the arena. Jen surveyed the damage, found my browband MIA, and had to go back to the trailer to find a new bridle to piece together for the lesson. She came back with another bridle, and his knotted noseband rope halter. I lunged him a while, and, in the morning foggy air, as I stopped to finally get on, steam was rising off his entire body. It wasn't particularly cold out, but incredibly humid.
We worked through all the normal test pieces, all the things he's been stickie on. Jen did NOT see the bending problems as Leslie described, so we're both puzzled by the whole "bend" discussion. We agreed on a slightly compromised hand position, not as high as the BRM lesson, but not touching the sheepskin half pad, either. Instead, something in the middle, forward and elevated slightly. It's not something I'll change overnight, but I will keep working on it.
When Ransom would be agreeable to some sitting trot and plenty of trot to walk transitions, I was able to let him canter. This is an ongoing activity as well - get him to quit antici-pating the canter just because I sit, or just because I'm in a corner, or whatever his excuse.
Total ride well over an hour. I scurried to get him undressed, change my clothes, and arrived at my job at 8:35am. *WheW*
I was exhausted the rest of the day. Take-home here? DON'T ride on a morning BEFORE going to work. Makes the work day feel like it'll never end.