I will be just a little bit surprised if Miss Rose lasts more than a week with us, at the rate she’s going. One fellow boarder who has been looking for a horse seems quite smitten with her and will be riding her in a lesson tomorrow. She’s been at the barn for a total of two days, so little mare makes an impression fast.
Today was a rather long day for Rose- we tested her patience mightily (and she seems to have lots of patience). First, Jen acted as test rider for the afternoon for a little spin around our small outdoor ring. During this, Rose had to contend with: yearlings pretending to be WWF wrestlers in the field next to the ring, a truck and trailer parking next to the ring, and ground poles (and all with a nearly 8 foot tall rider, to boot).
So really, she already has most of the skills she’ll need to be a successful show horse. She may not steer really well yet, or understand “inside leg to outside hand,” but she’s highly unlikely to care about flapping show tents or out of control toddlers. Well… maybe the toddlers, but they scare me too, so that’s totally forgivable.
While she needs some weight and fitness (and some work on her feet), she still moves in very nice fashion, stepping out free through her shoulder and moving happily forward. She seems very eager to please, and very pleasant about the whole thing.
She did show a teeeeeny bit of concern about the ground poles, though. Again, I totally get it. It’s not like a log in the woods, which belongs there, it’s a brightly painted random THING in a sea of plain old sand. It just shouldn’t be there, and it could turn out to be some sort of trap door to another dimension.
So, she eventually got the hang of it, but it took a couple of leads before she was totally assured that there was no disruption of the space-time continuum. On that note, Jen decided to quit and after many big pats it was time for a bath and the official “before” conformation photos.
Now, most racehorses have had baths before, so they kind of know the drill. However, I’m pretty sure most racehorses do not get those baths in scary strange wash stalls with cross ties. And I’m definitely sure they’re not used to being scrubbed by three adult women acting like prepubescent girls with their first pony. And I’m pretty sure she did not like the sweat scraper on her barrel as there’s not much covering her ribs. But she handled it all like a champ, even if she does think we’re all crazy 12.
Anyhow, here is the official “Before” photo of Miss Rose. The ones taken the day she came off the racetrack don’t really count, I think.