Saddle fitting

After the riding lesson on Tuesday, I scheduled an extra lesson to fit the dressage saddles I’d located. I want to make sure whichever saddle I choose fits not only me, but also Isis. A new (or used) saddle is a big investment (“cheap” means under $500).

Arabians are notoriously hard to fit in saddles because they tend to have broad shoulders and round backs. Isis’ hunt saddle (made by Zaldi) is a wide saddle with a 32 cm tree. I found three saddles to try: an Albion Comfort (owned by one of the ladies at the barn), a Collegiate Jessica Dressage (brand new, at an excellent price), and a Courbette Magic Dressage. Of these, the Albion is probably the highest quality saddle. It’s beautifully made and comfortable to sit in on the saddle rack. The saddle has a wide twist, which I’m not crazy about (feels like you’re sitting on a log).

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Flashback

I used to work at a company called iPIX. Like many other companies, it was struck down during the dot-com-bomb of 2000-2001. My job there was my dream job — and it stayed that way for the first 18 months. After that, things went downhill but not for what I Read more…

Courbette Magic Dressage Saddle

During my riding lesson on Tuesday, I did an experiment: I dropped my stirrup and rode as if I was in a dressage saddle. Big different on how Isis responded.

When you ride dressage, your seat is different then when you ride hunt seat. In dressage, you ride in a “balanced” seat: you sit back farther so that your upper body is up and down instead of leaning forward. Your stirrup length is also typically 2-3 holes longer.

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Stella: No UTI

Stella does not have a UTI: lab culture came back negative for anything. Dr Kipp thinks that Stella’s urninating is due to a progression of her kidney failure possibly also some senility. Stella has a follow-up visit tomorrow afternoon at 4:45 to check her blood work (luckily that test is only $25 instead of the $99 for the urine test). The blood work will also help us know if Stella needs to be started on regular subcutaneous fluids.

Pretty soon the question may be not what we can do, but how much do we do, and when do we put her down. Sigh.

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Riding lesson

Isis and I had a riding lesson this afternoon/evening. I hadn’t been able to ride on Monday. I had to make up time from Friday when I left early to take Stella to the vet’s.

My instructor asked me what I would like to work on. This was the perfect opportunity to work on problems pointed out by the show:

  • How do you correct a horse who isn’t listening and is more interested watching everyone else instead of paying attention?
  • How do you encourage a horse to accept the bit and bend when they start fighting you?

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Horse Show Report

Back from the show and man was I tired! I had been worried the show would be cancelled because of the rain we’ve had (plus the forecast). The show was on, luckily. I felt really good about our preparation for the dressage portion of the test. I was very nervous about the cross country part. We had only ridden on a cross country course once during the practise clinic a few weeks back. That was the first and only time we had been on a course.

The next morning I was up and at the barn early. (Early for me means before 11:00 AM on a Saturday.) Luckily the rain had stopped and Isis had not rolled when she had been outside. Susan and I groomed the horses and pretty soon we were on the way to the Fossils over Fences show.

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Horse Show!

Well it poured last night. As far as I know, the horse show (Fossils over Fences) has not been cancelled. This is Isis’ and my first combined training show: dressage, stadium jumping, and cross country. We’re showing in the lowest level class, which means the jumps are options, the stadium Read more…

Stella’s vet visit

Stella was really good this time for the vet this time. The vet gave Stella subcutaneous fluids (Stella was great (boggle)) and also took a urine sample. The initial results at the vet’s office were inconclusive. She said that often cats with kidney issues have such diluted urine that you Read more…

Concern over giant UK database

The BBC web site today reported that the Home Office of the UK is proposing development of an large communications database — greatly reducing privacy in net or mobile communications. The Communications Data Bill, due to be introduced in November in the Queen’s Speech in the UK, will create a database holding “communications information” on people’s phone calls, email, web browsing (pages visited, etc.) and other data. Allegedly, this database will not retain the content of the communications, only information about them. So while the sender, recipient, and date/time stamp of an email might be kept, the content of the email would not be.

The government is considering setting up a single database holding all the information, which would include numbers dialled and websites visited.

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