Friday, 4 September 2015

Day 238 - 246: Turning a vision into reality, breaking hammocks, grabbing a bargain, viewing horses and discovering Costa Drive Thru!

Day 238: Wednesday 26th August to Day 246: Thursday 3rd of September 

Tue 1st September - hugs with Jasper, my favourite cob! Facilitating his sale to a family I teach was a highlight of recent months :) 

I will write the update tomorrow - I say to myself every day this week. And every day I don't because my writing time is spent on various planning and putting impossible things together to match this vision I have had ever since doing a first draft of Academy idea that I shared with a friend of mine many years ago. Only the mad and the obsessed might understand ;)
So, onto the random chat!


Wednesday lessons go very well, I am super happy with my riders this week after some practice malfunction last week.
We have a slight problem in jumping session though. It looks like this:

I give Emma a little bootcamp jumping without reins and then without reins and without stirrups. She does very well ;)

Thursday is filled with my admin and writing. I am not as far with the book project as I would like but even though slowly, it is moving on.
I also put up an advert to start looking for a new horse for my 2 riders who are progressing nicely and who are ready to get a taste of grassroots events.
The idea is to find a full loan for them with a view to buy just in case one of them falls in love with the horse! Ideally I would love to find an owner who is into my training ethos and values but that is potentially pushing the luck. As long as we find the right horse we will be very happy. If you think you might be able to help, please have a look at the details here:

Friday is an unusually quiet day for me with my riders being away so I am continuing to catch up with various admin related projects. I also receive a message from someone with potentially a perfect horse matching the above advert so we arrange a viewing for Tuesday.

Saturday is the usual buzz albeit in reduced numbers as holidays take riders away; we have a nice little breakthrough in a couple of lessons. The weather is kind but still brings some odd showers!

Sunday night.

- "Don't be such a fail!!!!!!" - says a message on my screen. It makes me chuckle. Well, technically I am not failing but I have just changed into my pjs. It's 9.30pm and about an hour ago I was about to go out to friends' summer bash but as the departure time moved on I assumed I would just bail out and have an early night.
I try not to be "a fail", put some clothes back on and head out. We have a grand laugh at the party, break a hammock and all the rules of Billiard pool and I have just the right amount of Port wine ;) Then, there is a little problem with a taxi back which we have to wait for so I don't get back home until 3am.

Few hours of sleep later there is Monday and I have two of my lovely London riders for simulator sessions. I manage to stay awake thanks to some coffee and my passion for working out what's not doing what is supposed to be doing ;) I am really looking forward to seeing the riders on their horses next week as some aspects of their seat have improved greatly on the simulator.

Training done we set off to Robinsons Megastore to see what bargains they have on the last Bank Holiday of the summer. I manage to find a super waterproof coat at 70% off so count the trip as a very successful one! I also succumb to waterproof short Ariat yard boots with a sales tag as I have been repeatedly told by Ceri (who works on a hunting yard in notoriously wet Yorkshire so must be right, right?) that they are the best day-long boots ever. She better be right ;)

On way back we take a little de-tour via Basingstoke centre as we are desperate for some coffee and we come across this!

Please do excuse my excitement if you have seen these around but I had no idea they existed! Anyway ;)

Tuesday starts with a very good session for Alicia, followed by an interesting lesson where we are having to change the plan to suit the horse's frame of mind and feel through the body. I find it is always a good practice for the rider to encounter a horse on a day where an original lesson plan cannot be followed for whatever reason. It teaches empathy but also creative approach to schooling and athletic development of the animal.

Caitlin and the super cob are having their first go at the BD Intro test B as we are off to a little unaffiliated show on the 6th September. I hope they have a nice, positive experience and enjoy themselves. I believe it's not necessary to compete to test progress but it is a very good challenge to contrast training at home with riding away. Can I do it as well as when no one is watching? How well can I focus on the horse and only him? Competing with others is not the point, it's trying to reach personal best and have the horse on your side that's the exciting ingredient for me and I would like to pass this on to my riders. With that attitude, horse's wellness comes first, not the result.

Lessons and riding done, we set off to Buckinghamshire to view the horse whose owner responded to my advert. I have since received other enquiries but none that was worth pursuing. Everything sounds good, we get to the yard just before 8pm and love the horse. She is pretty much what we are looking for so we agree on preliminary conditions to go ahead.
I get a lift home so manage to arrive back around midnight, set my alarm and collapse in the pillows.

Wednesday is half a day today with morning teaching and running errands in the afternoon. I manage to get more writing done too. I wonder what will come out of this book!


Unfortunately, as we continue discussing the details, new restrictions appear on loan proposal and we find ourselves unable to reach a compromise so the search for the right horse goes on.

This takes me to the beginning of this post. Turning a vision into reality. You see, when all those years ago I made plans for the Academy and visualised how I would like it all to work, I had no idea, not a clue how to make it happen. I just saw it in my mind's eye how I wanted it all to be and over time made a lot of mistakes to try to reach that vision.

The main premise has always been for me to create an environment in which I can make dreams happen for riders who have the courage to dream those dreams and the determination to want to reach them. I wanted a situation where we could all work towards a progress without horses suffering in the process of our enjoyment...

When I close my eyes I can see it all as if in a movie that someone beautifully put together, written and choreographed but forgot to leave me the script ;) Over time I manage to script a scene here and there so it matches the movie but they are still fragmented and don't flow from one moment to another like they need to.

Finding the right horses for my riders is just one of the scenes. Jasper wrote himself into the script somewhat effortlessly and I suppose some might call it luck. I call it being at the right time at the right place and having the will to make things happen. Now, it's the matter of timing some more scenes and let them flow ;)



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