I had a great ride today in the indoor. Totally Ab Fab. We set up a 2' jump on the diagonal on some of those plastic blocks used for cavallettis. There are no real jumps available. After a little warmup, I took Brego over at a canter.
The boy can jump! Sure, it's 2' and sure it was a single fence, but he felt great. His canter was nice and balanced, thanks partly to the super tight corners in the indoor. He hit the striding and jumped properly, really using his back. He picked up the correct lead over the fence or swapped after one stride. The boy still has his auto changes.
I, of course, looked like I always do, elbows flapping, toes to the side. But! I did not get forward and I had a following contact. A little rusty, but not a complete disaster.
I feel really encouraged that we will be successful this season. And by success, I mean showing good improvement, no over facing (of either of us) and being respectful in our performance to the judges. No embarrassment.
Ok, so we can still jump. But Brego's conditioning is a real problem. I am glad the fence was just 2'. He needs to be much more fit to do higher or more jumps. Conditioning is now my #1 priority. Trot sets, here we come!
During my walk home, I put an arm around his neck as we walked and chatted about jumping and the summer and shows. I realized it was the first time we had jumped since the day of the Big Crash of '08. The fact that it had not occurred to me before then is a really good sign, that my nerve is still good. I also felt no hesitation from Brego. It will be interesting to see if either of us get any flashbacks as the intensity of our jumping progresses through the season.
For now, I am very very happy.