I got lovely news in the mail today. It was a note from the entry people for the big show that I’m going to this weekend saying that I entered both walk-trot and walk-trot-canter classes this weekend and that I have to choose one or the other. I knew I had done that. It didn’t say I couldn’t. Why is this happy?

Because my horse is being a @#$#$% (insert profanity of your choice – it will be accurate.)

If you had wandered past here at the right time yesterday I would not only have paid you to take her but I would have also loaded her in the trailer for you. She was acting like all her learning had fallen right out of her brain. The fact that I know that her learning had not fallen out of her brain and that she was in fact messing with me did not make me happier. How do I know that she was messing with me? Because when I finally snapped and yelled a choice selection of bad words at her in what is apparently a very threatening tone, she stopped dancing around and acting a fool and walked off like the well trained horse that she is. Henceforth whenever she would start acting up again I’d growl, “WALK!” at her and she would oblige. She has no idea how close she came to being strangled with my bare hands.

Even trotting was a problem. She was refusing to pick up a trot without editorial comment. I would ask for a trot and she would raise her head up and shake it, then put it down to her knees and shake it, and then act semi normal. While this shaking was going on she had a tendency to trip because she wasn’t looking where she was going. So, less than a week before a national-level show I was in my arena practicing walk to trot transitions. She came so close to death.

Then we tried cantering. Basically, the answer was no. Not no for any good reason – just no. After 1.5 hours of riding she decided to canter very nicely thank you very much. Whenever I asked. No problem at all. I was mad because I pre-entered the show and couldn’t get my money mad if I murdered the horse.

So when the news came today that I have to pick a division I was so happy. I’m picking the two walk-trot classes and eliminating the possibility that she’ll decide that she doesn’t feel like cantering at the show. In walk-trot no one expects her to be perfect. They assumes she’s just learning. The head shaking at the trot will have to go though.