Schooling this week has been interesting. I went out on Tuesday and although I didn’t feel like I had Galahad’s full attention – he felt very distracted and full of pent up energy – he was at least doing what I asked when I asked. Then my sister walked into the field, he apparently found her terrifying and we went tearing up to the other end of the field. I wasn’t too concerned by that – he can still be very spooky – but he then galloped right back to the other end again which is less common. The neighbouring farmer had just come into his field to feed his sheep which seemed like a possible reason for the second dash.
We went back to walking in circles and my sister went back indoors. I was very aware of the farmer going through the next gate but Galahad didn’t react and I hoped that was it.
It wasn’t. Next thing I knew we were galloping up and down the field again. I think it wouldn’t have been so bad but that particular field is very long and thin so Galahad can really get going before he has to stop or turn. This time he ran into the field shelter which was rather scary as I had no option but to duck right down. I did manage to stop him though and got off as it seemed safer! I led him round the field a few times until the farmer had left and Galahad seemed more settled. I knew I had to get back on but I got my Dad to hold Galahad as I did so. I was barely back in the saddle before he took off again, straight into the shelter. This time though I managed not to let him gallop up the field. We walked a lot of circles near the gate and then ventured a little further which was going well until we turned back and Galahad tried to take off again.
This time though, I was starting to get the hang of him. I couldn’t stop him immediately but I could direct him so we cantered several circles, then trotted a few and finally walked again. When he eventually started to relax I stopped him and got off. It seemed like a sensible idea to stop while we were ahead and not try to push it too much.
It was rather an unnerving experience but hopefully we were just having a bad day. I have ridden several times since then and although he once tried to canter home across the field we haven’t really had any more problems. Everyone is entitled to an off day once in a while!