Friday, August 29, 2014

Rochester memories & starting at a new barn

After college I took about 4 years off from riding. This was mostly a function of budget (non existent) and riding facilities (I had NO idea where to even go).

But part of the problem was just how happy I had been at my barn in Rochester during the college years. I trusted my trainer there completely. Even when I was scared (which wasn't exactly rare - see blog title lol), I knew that if she told me to do something, it was because she KNEW I was capable. And that alone was enough to inspire confidence in me. And that is also nearly impossible to replicate.

I still visit Rochester regularly, and schedule lessons during those visits. 

Last August, there was a schooling show the weekend I was visiting. But the trust is so strong - I said, 'never mind that I haven't jumped 2'6" in years or ridden any of your current school horses - enter me in the show on a horse and division of your choosing!'

Indy is a very good boy

That was definitely a LOT of fun. My performance was solidly meh - garnering me reserve champion in a class of two lol - but ooh boy did I have fun :)

corners are overrated
(also - this was when I discovered my tall boots didn't fit anymore... oops. but yay for wearing half chaps at schooling shows!)

It was also a perfect opportunity for catching up with all my old barn friends (both the two- and four-legged varieties). 

it's not physically possible to get Lad's whole head in a selfie

Starting at a new barn is always tricky - especially if you don't have your own horse. There's so much more to riding than getting in and out of the saddle, and for the sake of safety, pretty much nobody will just take your word for it that you have a clue. So committing to a new place, a new trainer, and new horses, was really overwhelming for me for a while. 

In fact, the first place I chose ended up being a terrible fit - I got off halfway through my third lesson because I was positive that the horse was going to throw me. Couldn't get the damn thing around a corner without pseudo-bucking and shit fits unless I parked it's nose on the ass of another horse. And the trainer offered the advice - 'he'll go in a frame if you ask him.' Yea. That's super helpful. I can't get him to go around a fucking corner, and you suggest I put him in a frame? Gee, how insightful. 

Anywho, after another few years of no riding, I finally managed to get back into it at a nice hunter barn surprisingly close to my home. And, a year or so after that, I met Isabel.

not exaggerating - Lad has a Very Large Head

But I still miss my Rochester barn... which is why I'm up there this weekend for another visit + lesson!! Happy Labor Day Weekend :)


  1. Finding a new barn is so hard. I went through similar trial and errors!

    1. I believe it. It was a real (first world) struggle. I feel so fortunate now that I've found a few places that are so nice :)

  2. When I had contemplated moving cross country I was equally scared, I ended up not moving at all. I know luckily that if I stay within my state my trainer has suggestions and I know most trainer's reputations as well!

    1. it's great to have trusted resources for recommendations. i'm hoping it's an experience i won't have to repeat again in the future, but if it is, at least there are all these wonderful bloggers spread around the country who might help!


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