On Thursday morning the saddle fitter was coming out at 9:00am. My husband had to get to work, so we took separate cars to the barn. We both cleaned stalls and he left for work.
Then I tacked up Dijon and did a quick ride up to the barn owner's house and then back and forth along the driveway. There's a nice flat stretch that we can actually pace/gait along so we did a lot of that. He has a ton of energy and was really convinced he should get to gallop. I did manage to convince him to gait a bit, but we had a bunch of breaks to pace as he got too excited.
It was nice to ride him though. After getting some energy out, I took him back down to the lower arena to wait for the saddle fitter and we practiced side-step. I wanted to practice half-pass, but he was being a bit of a jerk about it. I can get him to do half-pass beautifully when we're out on the trail and he wants to go back to the barn and I won't let him. But he thinks arena riding is stupid and acts like a fool when I ask for the same thing in the ring. So we went down to baby side-steps and I rewarded him for taking even a little step to the side.
The real issue is that I am not and never have been and probably never will be a good dressage rider, so I'm sure a part of the resistance is me not asking correctly. However, I was having issues with it one time and asked the trainer who was walking by doing something else if she could watch me for a minute and tell me what I was doing wrong. She watched me ask for half-pass. Then she said, go the other direction, towards the gate. I did and he magically suddenly became fully capable to doing it. And from both directions so long as we were heading towards the gate. So I may not be an awesome rider, but he's also partially responsible for not getting it done.
I was alone at the barn so the only pics I have were taken by me while on him. How do other bloggers do pictures of themselves riding? Do I need a special app or device or what?
The saddler arrived right around 9 and I showed him the saddle before showing him the pictures. He immediately noticed that the left and right panels had compressed at different rates (which might explain why my stirrups were feeling uneven despite being on the same number, having non-stretch lining, and being like 1 month old).
I also showed him the picture of it coming up in the back and he thinks he can fix that too. We'll see. The saddle was fitting Nilla for the previous few months so if he can get it back to fitting for a few more months while I search for a new saddle that actually fits me, that'd be great. In the mean-time I can either ride bareback or go back to the itty bitty 16" dressage saddle that also does not fit me. I also have a treeless saddle, but I need to get stirrup leathers for it. The saddler and I both have some upcoming time conflicts so I'm not sure when I will be able to get the saddle back.
On the non-equine front, my dogs have been getting extra days at the office this week and they are very excited about that.