Good Vs. Evil

Good versus evil is one of those classic themes that appears again and again in movies, television, books, and life in general.  In the movies, good and evil are often portrayed as an angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other.  People of a certain age will remember the scene in Animal House when the freshman must decide what to do at the toga party with the help of his personal angel and devil.  Well, today Ike’s angel and imp both made appearances.  I have not seen the devilish side of Ike, but it is obviously in there laying dormant.

Started with the trailer.  Ike had yesterday off, so this was the next hurdle to overcome.  Would he remember his Red Revelle lesson and load up on command after a break?  He did!  His shoulder angel must have told him, “Yes, be a good boy and walk on that trailer.”  There was not a moment’s hesitation and no tap from the whip was necessary.  I didn’t even have to hold the whip.

Next came the farrier.  Mr. P is awesome and does wonders with Ike’s less than perfect hooves.  One of Ike’s front hooves toes out, but Mr. P makes sure that he breaks over the middle of the shoe.  Ike is narrow behind and if we are not careful, he will interfere and cut himself on his inside right hind.  Not a problem for Mr. P.  Ike was a bit mouthy today – his lips kept playing with the lead rope, my hand, my arm, Mr. P’s ear, Mr. P’s belt loops, whatever they could get close to.  Well, Ike got a bit TOO mouthy and decided to bite Mr. P on the shoulder.  Let’s just say that that did not go over well and Ike got a thwack on the mouth. and some stern words. “The devil made me do it, ” Ike retorted.  There is that dormant imp making an appearance.  After that, he behaved for the rest of the shoeing.  Naughty pony.

I was able to get a 20 minute ride in after Ike’s shoeing.  He must have felt repentant about his devilish behavior because he was a complete angel under saddle.  I’m glad that the angel usually prevails – it makes my rides so much more pleasurable.  His canter continues to improve; it is more rhythmic and balanced.  Ike gets the correct lead almost every try.  It will soon be time to put the canter to the test with some Training Level tests.  Opted for Intro B and Intro C for our June 3rd outting to a dressage schooling show in Stafford.  Figured Ike has done them successfully and it would give him confidence at his second show.  Two weeks later, we are headed back to Commonwealth and will attempt Intro B, Intro C, and Opportunity Training Level Test 1. (I still don’t have Ike registered with USEF and USDF, so these are the tests at the recognized show that we can do without horse numbers….all in due time.)

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