WOW, love the beach pics! I'm so jealous. I'd love to have a big huge beach to ride on like that. I'm stuck doing it in my backyard. I've got enough room to lope/canter around a bit but haven't gone galloping like that in an open area in probably a year or so...man I miss it.
And wisher, I know what you mean. I'm the same way. I won't ride anything bomb proof, drives me nuts, I find it so boring. We had my current mare's dam when I was a kid and she was the stereotypical crazy arabian that gives all other Arabs a bad name (course now I know it was more lack of training than being crazy) but I loved riding her. She took care of me when I was on her, making sure I never got hurt and although she was hyper and more than a little unpredictable, she was so much FUN!
I've been working on retraining my current mare for over a year now. She was 17 when I got her and barely even green broke. Worse than even just being really green, she had been allowed to get away with whatever she wanted her life. Her previous owners didn't expect or even require any kind of respect or anything. She went where she wanted when she wanted and at the speed she wanted...and they never worked at changing that I assume b/c they didn't know how. So, when I got her, she was spoiled, head strong, stubborn and a speed demon who thought she was the boss. And why shouldn't she? She had 17 years of history that said she was.
It's going slow b/c I don't have a lot of space and don't have an indoor, but she was doing beautifully! When I got her, she couldn't/wouldn't even whoa, never mind stand still. It was bad. We had a few really scary days in the beginning. There was no collection happening at all and no impulsion from behind. To get a lope/canter, she was just like a youngster, needing to fly around at about a mach 9 trot for 5 minutes before finally transitioning up. But I kept it up and she's now stopping beautifully with my seat/leg aids and an ever so slight amount of rein. She turns on a dime, and because of all the circling/balancing work I've done, our lope/canter transition is 100% better, she can go from a slow jog right into it and almost from a walk. She's also doing very well with leg yeilding and giving to the bit.
So, after all this work/improvement she decided about a month or so ago that she's just to darn old to be retrained and she's taken a huge step backwards. She's jigging non-stop again, flinging her head around and UP (which I had gotten her stop completely for close to a year), she's dancing and pitching fits on the spot and has decided to start bucking a little (which was something I didn't think she'd EVER do). It's bothering me so much b/c of all the work I've done to stop this behaviour and how far she had come. It's just frustrating b/c instead of continuing on in the training and bringing her even farther, I have to go back to the basics again and start from scratch.
Oops, sorry that got kinda long.
Can you tell I'm kinda passionate about my baby?