So, while Presto was overall really good on our off-farm adventure on Sunday, there was one little incident that reminded me that he is indeed 3.
I don’t even remember what he spooked at, but it was over really fast. One propped stride, a stare off into the distance, and we were off again. He has this weird technique when it comes to spooking… it’s like a combination of the thoroughbred “teleport” (where they exit the premises as quickly as possible – Henry’s favorite method) and the warmblood “stop and snort” (where they plant all 4 feet and won’t move). Presto is like 50% stop and snort and 50% teleport that makes for a very… um, athletic combination. That combined with the fact that his shoulders are so narrow makes it reaaaaally easy to become unseated. I stayed on, not a problem, but I did find myself thinking “I really need to order a new neck strap…” in that particular moment.
My last neck strap was a plain brown leather one from Nunn Finer that seems to have grown legs and R-U-N-N-O-F-T. I was waiting for the Black Friday sales to order another, having narrowed it down to either the Clever with Leather padded one or the Super X Country biothane one, but I figured it might be in my best interest to just go ahead and pay a few bucks more to get one sooner. A few things made me lean the way of SXC over CWL – 1) the SXC one is thinner than the CWL one, which I prefer. 2) while generally I would pick leather over biothane in pretty much every instance, a neck strap might be one of the few exceptions. Especially for Presto, who sweats REALLY WELL. 3) more color/customization options. Especially when SXC just came out with a rainbow hardware option. 4) the SXC was a bit cheaper.
Know what dis bitch likes? RAINBOW HARDWARE. I have none of it on anything else I own, but a neck strap can be more fun right? It’s such a small detail. I’m running with it.
I ended up ordering a navy neck strap (with d ring saddle attachment, so it’s super legal no matter what) with rainbow hardware and rainbow lettering that says OH SH!T. Because I’m equal parts adult and child, I guess. Whatever. It’ll amuse me, and that’s all that matters. I’m pretty conservative (for an eventer anyway) with my color options and show turnout, but teeny little touches on a neck strap are kinda like my little secret, and will probably bring me joy every time I put it on. What else can you ask for from a dang neck strap? We’ll see how long it takes to get here from the UK. Why do they have all the best things?
And then in my mad internet scouring, looking for cheap FreeJump stirrups, I finally found what I was looking for in a consignment shop in Arizona that had mostly Western and low-end English gear. A very random find, but there they were, and for about 60% off retail. I swear, I looked at every consignment tack shop in the friggin US and every listing on facebook, and while I did find a few, none of them were very discounted. The listing on this site just had them as “FreeJump stirrups” with no info about which model, and the picture showed some really dirty, sad looking black stirrups. I wish I had saved the original picture, since the listing is gone now. Anyway, from the angle of the photo I couldn’t tell if they were the Lite or the Pro, so I called the shop and asked them to send me a couple more photos.
Anyway, I nabbed them and they’re on their way to me as we speak. I’m pretty sure I’ve got my leathers situation covered thanks to Stacie, so now with both leathers and stirrups I won’t have to worry about switching anything back and forth between Henry and Presto’s saddles. Me forgetting to switch them before hauling somewhere and ending up with no stirrups on my saddle became a recurring nightmare, because it’s 100% something I would do.
I have to admit that black stirrups don’t get me super excited though. Right now I have navy Lorenzini’s on my dressage saddle and navy FreeJumps (which are admittedly a bright navy that is closer to royal IMO, I don’t love the shade) and there’s just nothing exciting about non-colored stirrups anymore. Eventer, remember?
I have a lot of painting experience from past projects, so I’m tempted to give these a go too. Specifically leaning towards either plain dark green or navy glitter. Just a lil’ bit of glitter. Like a tiny bit. Enough to count as glitter but not enough to be like GLITTER, ya know? I can picture it in my head, just go with it. I’m definitely leaning towards that over green (a few people have said to do dark green glitter but… green is already a stretch for me, I’m not sure how I feel about it with glitter) but I’m still waffling a bit. Glitter just sounds more fun though, ya know?