It's the end of the day. I feel flushed with success.. And sore, having used muscles I haven't used in awhile! I loved riding this morning. Yes, I'm a bit rusty, but Grant said he won't change much about the way I ride and that I ride well, he's just got to get me fit, and of course I'm used to dressage which is different from jumping.
I dropped the kids off this morning, then called in to my local newsagent to see if I could get a copy of Sunday's Herald Sun. They had one, so I have a copy of my front page photograph. They had seen the photograph in the Tele and the Herald Sun, and were pleased, and asked what I was going to do now Black Caviar has been retired! Hopefully still see her I said!!!!
I then called in to see Freelance and feed her. She looks well, and it was nice to see her, and then I went straight from there to my riding lesson. Grant popped me on a middle sized gelding called Buddy. I liked him. He's not as responsive and flexible as Freelance, and is stiffer in that he doesn't go 'round', but he was nice and I liked the fact that he didn't shy and carry on like a pork chop!
Grant started slowly with me, we just did work on the flat, and some trot poles, then straight into the canter, and Buddy had a nice strong canter, and I liked it! Oh how it felt to be on a cantering horse again! Then he got me to ride forward and up in my irons. Having been doing so much dressage I haven't done this for ages! It's a nonsense, because I probably spent half my childhood and teens up in the irons and crouched over my horse's neck, usually going flat out. Sometimes jumping paddock gates in the process, or thundering madly around corners with the horse wearing nothing but a rug and a headstall and leadrope. I have to admit it felt strange to begin with, but after a lap or two, all of a sudden I had my balance and rhythm and it felt great.
Grant then gave me and Buddy a short rest while we walked on a long rein, and then he set up the small jump. I popped Buddy over the jump about 4 times, cantering after the jump and over the pole about 3 canter strides after it, and then Grant said we'd done enough. My brother Tom, who called over for dinner tonight, asked me with a beaming smile on his face "and did you go wheeeeeeeeee as you went over it???" And I put my hands to my mouth, almost jumped about and said "yes!!!! I did!!!!!" I wish that I one day I could get some photographs of me riding, but I know that this is a forlorn hope. Most of my friends don't do well with a camera. Maybe one day though. And ok, it was only a little jump, but I tell myself it was not a bad effort considering I haven't ridden in probably 12 months, and it would be 15 years since I've gone over a jump.
Like I said, I am stiff and a bit sore, but triumphant. In the words of Albus Dumbledore, from Harry Potter - "It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live". The last 5 or 6 days have been hugely successful ones. I have had more lovely messages about the Gai Waterhouse image, and it continues to run across the country. To date it's graced the front pages of 2 major newspapers, and run in another 4 that know of, both today and yesterday.
I can hear gentle rain beginning to fall, although not much is actually forecast. Rain at night is nice, although it is nicer when there's someone to be a limpet with. I am back in the showroom tomorrow, from Tuesday through Thursday. No doubt I will wake up a little sore tomorrow morning, but it is SO worth it! I have my next lesson booked in already, and have plans to get Freelance going as well, provided her legs are up to it and she stays sound. My darling mare is 18 now, and is a day to day proposition.
Oh, and here's a little bit of trivia to finish off. Before cooking the excellent roast chicken, I finally turned the oven trays I have been glaring at suspiciously since I put the oven back together again after cleaning it for the last house inspection. Yes... I've had 2 inspections and cleaned the oven twice. And on both occasions I have put my trays in back the front. And taken weeks to work out what was wrong.