Did you know that you can hold onto a horses mane without it hurting the horse? That even the strongest of tugs won't hurt them.
Today I rode Smokey bareback and I gripped his thick mane firmly with my hands. Without the saddle to contend with, I could feel the every motion of his spine and hips so perfectly. In many regards riding bareback felt easier than riding with a saddle on. A bareback rider and their horse are essentilally one.
When Becka suggested I do a posting trot when bareback, I knew it wouldn't be pretty. There was a lot of thigh squeezing involved to support myself with the movement of the post. Keeping my heels down felt like a perpetual struggle to remember. But that hardest part was the "squeeze". Squeezing my thighs together, calfs together to increase the energy to bring him to a walk.
The sun was blazing and I regretted wearing two layers of shirts, something which hardly ever happens in Kodiak. Every lesson is different and todays was out in the "ring" where Smokey and I ride around a smaller circle with Becka in the middle cueing and guiding. My challenge is to keep Smokey off the rails, as well as making him go through a puddle that he doesn't want to go through. All tests for me in my horsemanship. Can I make Smokey navigate the puddle he dislikes? I learned how.
The past few months have been freeing. Freeing to try new things, explore the arts with summer adult art camp and soon I'm going to do an online summer writing class. I've realized, if not now, then when?
And some picutres from St. Mary's earlier in the school year. Erica V. and I made a class quilt with Nora's class. We helped all the kids sew quilt squares together then Erica and I assembled the quilt together and it was auctioned off at the school auction.