12.03.21: Giving me the Run Around

I realized that I hadn't had a chance to work him since the last lesson in February, and it was getting down to the wire of our next set of lessons again. With Jeffra having been there the previous weekend, and lessons coming the next weekend, I was fast running out of time. The week was busy, and as it ended up, I had to take a half day off of work to hold the horses for the farrier since one of the other girls ended up with meetings she couldn't get out of. It turned out that Wednesday was also the day the vet was coming to do spring shots. Busy, busy!
I got to the barn and Holly told me that Storm was an absolute gentleman for the vet, he didn't even need to be tied or brought out of his stall. He stood with his head hanging over the stall door while they drew two sets of blood (for his annual Coggins check and another set to run the Lyme test again), plus got his rabies shot. I was impressed! I headed out to get Charlie and bring him in for lunch and then figured we'd start with Sado, and headed out to the pasture with his halter. I got part way down the hill and Storm volunteered to come in, so I threw Sado's lead rope around his neck, and we headed back up the hill. He got into the barn and got a little nervous for some reason, so I stopped and took off his fly mask, and brought him down and put him in his stall so I could grab his halter and get him organized. 
He behaved very well for the farrier, and we finished up quickly, so I turned him out and we took care of Charlie before I headed out to collect Sado and we finished up for the day. Holly and I did some organizing of the hay barn trying to keep things a little neater in there, and then when she had to leave I took the time to go get Storm and get a little work time in. I didn't like the fact that I was working him on the same day as he had shots, but I didn't have too much of a choice with the schedule for the rest of the week. 
I got him out and groomed him for a little while first since he is shedding like crazy and I figured if he got hot it was easier to get the hair out before he was sweaty than after. There were some girls down in the arena with a horse, so I was hoping they would finish up and then we could go have the arena to ourselves. To my disappointment they finished and a lesson began. Linda is understanding of us needing a large space to work, so she took her lesson to the end with all the stuff set up and I was able to spread out with Storm.
He settled into the work easily, and I was able to ask him to move out on the line without too much trouble. He wasn't using all of it, but he was doing ok, and I was able to keep up with the rest of the line without too much trouble. I asked him to trot, and he moved off without too much trouble, but dropped back down to the walk again fairly quickly. I asked for a few more transitions before deciding that he needed to put in a little more energy. I asked him for the canter, and he took off. And he went, and went, and ran, and ran and ran. I kept an eye on the lesson at the other end of the arena, and the horse seemed to be pretty chilled out, so I didn't worry too much, and let Storm do what he needed to do. He was moving out pretty fast, at one point so hard that I could feel his balance slipping, and he was leaning pretty hard on the rope. I told him that he had to be responsible for his own feet and that he'd better not wipe out at that speed! He managed to maintain himself, and finally, eventually began to slow down. He made it back to the walk after more than 20 laps (I was getting dizzy in the middle of the circle! Do you have any idea how FAST a big horse can haul his butt around an 80' diameter circle!?), and I let him walk for a while settling down and cooling out. By this time Linda had taken her lesson into the round pen to move a little further from Storm's antics since the young girl riding was a bit unnerved by his speed. Midnite was happy in the round pen playing with the big green ball and when Storm settled down enough to notice that got him all unnerved all over again. I finally changed directions and let him work some things out going to the left. He wasn't really interested in continuing to work, but I told him he had to keep moving on, and so he did, but I could tell that he was really distracted. Especially when he started trying to find a spot to roll. I wanted to let him enjoy that but thought the better of it since I didn't want him to get the idea that rolling in the midst of working was a good thing, so we continued on. I let him cool down for a while more before calling it a day and heading back up the hill.
Chelsea was feeding, and I grabbed her to hold him really quick while I got a sponge and the bucket to sponge him off since he was pretty cooked and too warm to be allowed to eat. As I was getting things together I looked up and Joker wandered out of his stall and out the back door, so I headed out after him. He finally let me catch him when he found some REALLY enticing green grass. I put him away, and then returned to get the bucket and sponge and started to rinse Storm off. He was filthy on top of being sweaty and shedding, and it was disgusting trying to sponge him off. The water quickly turned brown, and the sponge had so much hair stuck to it that it seemed like a small fuzzy critter. We walked some more and cooled down before he eventually was cooled enough to eat his dinner. I let him eat and then turned him out again for the night.

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