This morning Brett and I were finally able to ride. He's stopped hurting from his fall off of Mufasa and it was under 85F (barely) when we finished the morning chores. While I tacked up Lucy, Brett got Pistol groomed and ready to go.
Both of us were thrilled with our rides.
Lucy, you may remember, has been bucking and pitching a fit when asked to canter. I've lunged her first the last few times so she could figure out that her hocks shouldn't be hurting anymore. And, because she was still worried and reactive about that issue, I've only been doing light trot work. No canter. Today, she was very chill. Riding with Pistol in the arena was a whole different, easier, and more relaxed gig than riding with Mufasa. She was a bit sluggish at first but it didn't take long to get her on the aids. Hmm, I thought, I wonder if she'll canter for me. And, sure enough, she did. Prompt, smooth, no second thoughts or hesitation. Just a glorious canter. I praised her lavishly and we took a long walk break before calling it a morning.
Meanwhile, Brett and Pistol were having a great time as well. As Brett stood on the mounting block when we started, he said "I'm a bit apprehensive." Fair enough. You come off, you feel apprehensive. He earned that. But, Pistol stood like a rock while he got on and didn't move a muscle until he said he was ready. Pistol is a lot shorter than Mufasa, but she has a very large barrel so Brett's legs didn't dangle at all. In fact, they looked darn good together. Brett planned to walk, and perhaps try trotting. Perhaps. He walked Pistol over a pole. They backed (like a dream he said). And then they trotted; just a couple 20m circles (because she is out of shape) in each direction. Brett said that as they finished up trotting, Pistol asked him if they could canter. He said sure thing. Off they went. It was beautiful to watch.
When Brett cantered on Mufasa, it was not harmonious. Mufasa fell out, he was strung out, and Brett struggled to find balance on his unbalanced horse. Pistol, on the other hand, was balanced and confident. They were the picture of harmony.
Brett was grinning as we walked the horses back to the barn. Pistol kept turning her head to nuzzle him in the chest. I think they are going to get along just fine.