It's been three weeks since I've ridden Lucy. Two weekends of heavy smoke followed by one with steady rain meant no riding. We are having a very warm weekend with record highs -- even in San Francisco. Kyle is visiting for the weekend and is used to the SF weather of steady 70ish foggy days. Not this weekend, highs today are close to 90 there and we are the same here. The nights are still cool though so when I rode first thing this morning, it was a very comfortable 52F.
Brett read the paper in the house while I rode so Lucy wouldn't worry about missing breakfast. She was up by the goat area when I walked down to the gate. The goats saw me coming and made a beeline for the pasture gate. (Brett says I look like Mary Had a Little Lamb when I walk around in the pasture with the goats in a tight bunch, surrounding me, trotting along and weaving in front of me and amongst themselves). I was worried that they would dash out the gate but it was fine. Pistol came trotting up and the goats scattered. Lucy looked up, saw me with the halter, and trotted over.
On our way out to the dressage court, when we were about half way down the donkey/Jackson pasture, Lucy suddenly threw her head high and sank back on her hind legs before prancing forward. What the heck? I didn't see anything in the dressage court or beyond but she clearly was agitated about something. I hand walked her around the court and the minute we stepped inside, her head dropped and she walked quietly next to me. I noted a big squirrel hole on the rail at E. I'd need to avoid that and not do 20m circles in the center of the court. I led Lucy back out of the arena and saw the reason for her agitation. Jackson. He was at the fence with his nose peaking over the top, stretching toward Lucy with all his might. She stretched towards him and batted her eyes. I let them touch noses, waiting for the inevitable squeal from Lucy. Instead, she nibbled on his lips and cooed in his ear.
Jackson has a new nickname: Lover Boy.
We had a lovely ride but didn't do too much canter. The arena sand was packed as hard as cement from the rain. But there wasn't any dust. I hate riding in the summer time dust cloud. Brett said he would drag the arena before next weekend so it's softer when I ride. I'll take cement over dust any day. I'm very careful with Lucy when I ride from a joint health standpoint. She's an awesomely talented fun horse with crappy joints. She spent most of her life as a jumper and had to stop due to those issues. This means, despite her training and talent, she was really inexpensive. I intend to keep her sound as long as I can and that means taking extra precautions with the footing -- and easing her back into work after time off.