got that feeling again

We took a couple days off to spend some time together in celebration of my birthday, and enjoyed the last day in a string of gorgeous weather at Iron Horse. Koda & Nemo were intrigued when they got out of the trailer. This familiar place was active with different horses, puppy, playset, people etc. For any new readers, we had our horses trained there earlier this year. After a short not so focused warm up, we joined Patty and friends in her large outdoor arena. It is always sooo great to go there, we caught up on as many things as we could between riding.

Wasn't too long before we had company...

Four deer grazing by the trees (pony on the left)
...Nemo kept a watchful eye on them, and everything else. He was a little more distracted then Brad would have liked, but kept working with him.

Brad & Nemo backing up
I was pleasantly surprised how well Koda & I did. We had not done any arena riding in a long time, opting instead for trail rides while weather permits. We don't run our young boys on the trail, so faster gaits have pretty much been non-existent. Patty mentioned how good our trot looked, altho Koda could be taking to the bit better (at times he braces against it). Nothing terrible, just in need of reminders. It's easy to feel, the putting it all together part I continue working on. Of course I said thanks, and mentioned "ohhh just wait til we lope, it's been a long time". We all rode around using the bridge, poles, transitioning etc - so many options.

Patty and King Kitty taking a break, on top of her horse Claire.
It was fun to see how a young quarter horse had come around on her final day of departure. Maddie is pictured in the background above. We were at Iron Horse when she arrived with little to no handling, and saw her regularly since our boys were living there at the time. She was a handful, but turned out to be a nice trusting mount. After saying good-bye to Maddie and her owner, we talked about future plans for Koda & Nemo. We are saving our pennies, and plan to take them back to Patty's sometime in January. It's a good time of year for them to advance their learning (and ours) and be where there is an indoor arena. Not much outdoor riding to be done in January, in WI!

Taking a break with my Koda-bear
Break time was over, and we went back to riding. Koda and I started to lope...wow...we earned several sincere compliments! It was our best ride ever!! Koda was listening to everything I asked. Not what I expected at all, after such a long time out of the arena. A testament to his good training. He was sooo smooth and must have somewhat looked how he does when Patty rides him, because he sure felt like it. Since he was listening, I was able to concentrate on other things like my hands/seat - so quiet, no lifting. I LOVE that feeling! It was such a nice controlled pace, he stopped, started and continued when asked. Amazing. We took more breaks, did other things - and more loping. Not too much, but just enough. I was so busy enjoying myself at the time to really think about what was happening, but that night when Brad and I went out to dinner - it hit me. I had to choke back the tears. I never thought I would feel that way again. I had made a hard decision years ago, and said good-bye to that wonderful "we got it together feeling", when I left the lesson barn I used to ride at years ago. The feeling of pure enjoyment. When everything around you stands still, and together, you effortlessly - float.


juliette said...

How wonderful for you and Koda. He is just adorable in that photo and must have been the best boy while you loped. It is so great when it all comes together...especially when you are never expecting that to happen again! Hooray!

Jeni said...

awwww what a wonderful time. I"m so happy for you =)

Unknown said...

Sounds magical! What a wonderful gift.

aurora said...

Yeah, I pretty much thought those days were gone forever...enter Koda. We really are an even better match (most days, thanks god!)...it really was special, even more so sharing it with you guys :)

Sherry Sikstrom said...

sounds just great ,and happy belated birthday!

Leah Fry said...

Sounds wonderful. Glad you got your mojo back ;-)

Rising Rainbow said...

Not much riding here outside in January either. Heck, not much outside riding here right now. Winter sucks.

Glad to hear you and Koda are coming together. I love that feeling.