After a certain initial stickiness (described in the previous post), we got Rose tacked up and positioned next to the kitchen steps, and up went husband, groaning loudly at the required contortions (yoga notwithstanding).
I kept a leadrope clipped to Rose's bridle, and off we went down the road, Rose stepping out nicely and looking relaxed. She stopped frequently to look around, and I waited a few moments each time before asking her if she was ready to proceed. She remembered the horses over at the neighbors' and whinnied off into the distance. I couldn't hear any replies, but maybe she could.
After a few hundred yards, she no longer wanted to continue, so we headed home. When we reached the bottom of our drive, however, Rose said, "No, I don't want to go home just yet." I let her pick our next move, which was to set off down the road in the opposite direction.
When a large vehicle went by, I lead her into the alfalfa field, and at that point it seemed to make sense to keep going up the side of the field and home via the back circuit of the property.
Rose continued very happily, and my husband said something like, "It's very big of her to be a good sport and keep going like this." Which I thought was very nice and showed a proper appreciation.
When we arrived home in the back yard, my husband dismounted onto the picnic table. After we'd untacked Rose, I told her she could go back to join the others now and started to lead her off, but she planted her feet, half-closed her eyes and indicated that she planned to stay in the back yard with us. So I gave the rope to my husband and let her stay a bit longer.
Here are two photos - one from near the start of the ride and one from near the end. You can see the confidence in both horse and rider has grown over the course of the ride. Also I fancy I see more of a horse/rider connection in the second photo.
|(Made more holes in that new bridle, but it still ain't right.)|