Shooting Star Stables
. . . She trotted Aphrodite over some cavelletti on the ground to get her in the right mindset of pacing her steps, before asking for a canter again and turning her toward the first jump.
“Five, four, three, two, one, jump!” She counted down each stride in her head. The next jump in her set of two was only four strides away, and she and Aphrodite took the jump smoothly.
“Good job! Do it again; this time, let Aphrodite come up to you a little more instead of leaning quite so far forward,” Katie called as Holly cantered away from the jump. Holly nodded and headed around for a second try.
Just then, Blair stalked toward the mounting block with her horse Godiva, a rich dark bay. He was a championship-winning warmblood that Blair’s parents had bought her after she had grown tired of her previous jumping horse. Blair’s perfectly straightened long dark hair made her and her chocolate-colored horse a stunning pair. Unfortunately, Blair’s less-than-beautiful personality spoiled any admiration she might have received from other riders.
As sometimes happened when Blair couldn’t make her weekly private lesson, she would be joining Holly and Jennifer’s semi-private lesson. Holly groaned inwardly as Blair entered the ring. She always felt so self-conscious about her riding abilities when Blair was around, as if Blair was judging her every move (which she probably was). Holly tried to ignore her as Blair began warming her horse up by focusing instead on Jennifer. Jennifer’s series of jumps was kind of complicated, but she was doing well. She looked confident and serious as she approached each jump, and Holly tried to channel some of that confidence she saw into her own riding.
The rest of the lesson passed with the usual number of Blair’s snooty comments to Holly as she glided by. Holly did her best to ignore them, and ended up significantly improving the evenness of Aphrodite’s strides by the end of the lesson. She was almost relieved when the lesson ended, though, because it meant she and Casey and Jennifer would get to go on their requisite talk-about-the-school-day trail ride . . .
Read more about the girls of Shooting Star Stables tomorrow!