On Sunday after we finished moving the boys and unpacking/arranging all of our stuff at the new place, the BO invited us to go on “walkabout” with her and another boarder. The barn is off in the back county roads where there isn’t really much traffic, so they often go on rides down the road. When I was a working student at an eventing barn on the east coast most of the horses regularly did road work at least twice a week (by “work”, I mean we would walk through the neighborhood next door for half an hour or so). The science is that a little bit of conditioning work on hard surfaces helps build bone density and strengthen tendons and ligaments. It seems more common in Europe than here, and among eventers. Maybe if everyone just agreed to call it “walkabout” more people would be into it. Road work sounds like something you would do in a hard hat with a jackhammer. Walkabout sounds like a grand adventure.
I’ve never ridden Henry on the roads and he’d had a few days off, plus just moved to a new place, but there were 4 of us in the group and he is generally a cool-headed dude anyway, so I tacked up and off we went. I couldn’t resist the appeal of getting some Vitamin D on a beautiful 75 degree January day while on walkabout with my pony. (best sentence ever)
He gave the herd of baby and momma cows a good hearty “What in the holy hell???” jiggy sideways stare, and flinched at a couple cars that passed a little too close for his comfort, but otherwise he was great. About halfway through he settled and ambled the rest of the way on a long rein.
I’m excited to be able to add a little bit of road work (er, sorry, WALKABOUT) to our repertoire. Plus the new barn is only about a mile up the road from a good friend’s place, so I can literally ride my horse to her house!