Alice left yesterday :( It's weird how quickly this job can catapult you into closeness. Three months aago I didn't know Alice at all, and suddenly we were living and working together and basically hanging out 24/7. I'll really miss having her around Rancho Pampa, but wish her the best of luck with her pursuits in eventing... can't wait to see her and Classic Skyline at NAJYRC :)
Since it was Alice's last day yesterday we did a jump school in the morning on the young ones. It was a big course with two related distances (one a bending line in six, the other a six or seven, vertical to BIG triple bar. There were also two combinations, a two stride and a one stride. It was really fun and Boss jumped super well-- I actually can barely stay with that horse's jump. He's about fifteen hands and his hind end goes above my head over the fences.
After that we hacked some horses and I had a bit of a trick played on me by Martin. He'd picked up a new horse a couple of days beforehand and we knew nothing about him. He handed me the horse and asked me if I'd ever ridden a horse I knew nothing about before. "No..." He told me to lunge the horse and then see about getting on. So I carefully led him out, cautiously tightened the girth, lunged him around-- he seemed to be familiar with it-- and when I finally decided to try mounting, Martin impassively watched as I patted him on either side, leaned my weight slowly across the saddle and carefully mounted. He started instructing me to try all the gaits, and I'm sure my face was a mask of supreme focus and concentration as I tried to read how green the horse was and how he was reacting to everything I was asking (quite well, as it happens.) Then Martin had me go over a cavelletti. Then a small jump, then a bigger jump, and finally a small course... turns out he was an old schoolmaster. I felt supremely foolish!
Saturday (first Aliceless day :( ) involved Katie heading off to the Allemande for a show with four horses and Carlos. I stayed behind to ride the others and help Rodrigo with the youngsters. I rode Picaro, Skyline, Puccini, Boss, Holendesa, Pastrocito and Jour. It was HOT today and i must say I am thoroughly worn out from the sun all week, and more than ready for bed... but just waiting for a load of laundry to finish to up! Tomorrow is our first day at the Argentine Open polo game and I am beyond excited.