Saturday, April 2, 2011

Family Circus

Growing up, I loved reading the comics in the Sunday paper, especially Family Circus. One of my favorite themes was when Billy was sent from point A to point B and instead of taking the most direct path, he wandered all over the neighborhood and looked at everything, before arriving at his final destination.

Given a choice, John would also wander all over the neighborhood to look at everything when we go for trail rides.

I try to let him ride on a loose rein, but honestly, on a few of our 25 mile rides last year I think we may have added an extra 1/2 mile in "wandering" steps. Shuffle left, shuffle right, veer off trail to look at that branch...

This spring, as we do our long, slow conditioning rides (remarkably I have been able to keep these mostly at a walk) I am also concentrating on keeping John moving in a straight line (or straighter than he normally tracks). I use a lot of seat and legs so I can leave him on a loose rein, but just try and cut out some of the extra steps he takes, at least while we are riding. He can explore all he wants in his pasture!

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