Wednesday, September 18, 2013

18th September, 2013 Lunch is at One O'clock

First day today of a three day riding clinic with Amanda Barton. I love these clinics because they give me stuff to work on for at least a month and usually a year! Lorraine and Zak have done some remarkable things this last year including team cross country and dressage. Their session concentrated on removing any brace in Zak's turns with some lovely canter work as a 'holiday' in between.

After a year's worth of happy hacking and migrating around various parts of the country, Theoden now understands that forwards means forwards, and the recent more regular use of clicker in his ridden work has brought about a real change in his attitude. With greater willingness on his part it was possible to switch from a democratic decision about what time lunch would be to a benign dictatorship without him wanting to cause a revolution. Amanda explains that quite often a group will discuss when best to have lunch and various views will be expressed taking into account when people are due to arrive, what time the caterer is booked for and who wants to go first and second; what suits everyone best. In a different group, someone may simply decide lunch is at one o'clock. This takes a lot less time and yet everyone still gets to eat. In the same way, when I ask Theoden to go forwards now I can employ much greater clarity without him minding at all.

Telling Amanda she has got it right and then telling Theoden. (Really must get those longer jeans!)

Following lunch, it was time to go across the Forest via one of the quiet back roads to meet up with Jacqui, Semota and some new friends. 

Semoto has always been afraid of pigs ever since he arrived from Portugal some years ago. Today we introduced him to a Preliminary level pig called Sophie. Although huge (Double Gloucester Old Spot perhaps), she is quite slow moving. She made lots of lovely grunting noises which astonished him for a while but his curiosity overcame his fear. He also met goats for the first time. We are now looking for an intermediate/ advanced level pig(s) to introduce him to.

Always room for a picture of a glorious dog...