1. Most Influential Person on Your Riding
This has to be the wonderful lady who owns the barn that I basically grew up at in my hometown. She's celebrating her 80th birthday tonight with no sign of slowing down. I so wish I could have been there. The short version of the story is that she took a child (me :) ) from a not-so-happy situation, knowing next to nothing about me or my family, and let me ride and 'help' on the farm for basically free. She somehow made sure we (there were always a few of us there) had just enough supervision and help to stay safe and confident, yet more than enough alone time to let us just be kids with ponies. She's super old school and just full of health and training tips that are just common sense at it's most basic. I don't think there are adequate words to convey the difference she made in my life.
I see her pretty rarely these days. The last time I saw her I was riding Ginger last winter and she reamed me out for being unsafe by riding in my western saddle that was missing the little leather straps that keep the stirrup and fender together. Then, almost in the same sentence she complimented Ginger, and told me to stop boring my poor horse in the ring, get some baling twine to fix those stirrups, and come out for a trail ride with her. Typical :)
|First ride, 2011. Hey dummy, wipe that stupid grin off your face and fix your stirrups!|
|"Are we done in here yet?"|
2. Piece of tack you'd love to splurge on
I'm actually pretty content with Ginger's tack, and have a whole nother set (or two) from horses past *just in case* Ginger is not an only child again. We're pretty well equipped around here, and I think I've mentioned before that Ginger's stuff takes up way more room in the barn than she does. The only thing I'd really like is to find an oversized browband for the bridle I have that matches her Stubben saddle - so far it seems impossible to find at a price point I'm able to justify, and I'm too cheap to buy a completely new $250 bridle for her and pay to have it shipped from the UK, which seems to be the cheapest distrubutor to Canada.
|Actually, that's a pretty ghetto pad and girth too...never mind, the pony needs new everything for xmas!|
3. Top 5 riding playlist
I don't listen to music while riding. Particularly on Ginger, I think it would be a little dangerous. She's so aware of her surroundings that for me to be tuned out in any way would be asking for trouble. I do sing songs for her, which she enjoys - she's very voice oriented. No one in their right mind would ever listen my singing, so it's actually pretty awesome that she likes it when I rock out. Added bonus is it scares off wildlife and crazy humans who recognize my 'next level of crazy' superiority immediately upon hearing us coming. :) I don't think she has a top five greatest hits, but I'll check in with her on that. :)
|Keep moving...nothing to hear here....|
4. Most important aspect of your barn?
Since we're sort of in barn limbo right now I'll just say it has to be safe and provide excellent care for the pony. She needs to be happy and healthy - everything else is negotiable.
Preferences beyond that include lots of turnout, a nice dry stall, some form of ring, and a trail system available close by. Coaching, jumps, hot water, and of course great barnmates are also total bonuses.
|Maybe a little of the Alberta sized pasture with some big city amenities. I think we could both handle that!|
- Get us both happily back into it
- Take as many lessons and clinics as we can find
- Keep it fun
|I'm thinking days at the beach,|
|Nice long runs,|
|and a good party now and then, birthday hat optional|