Just a quick post to report that Salem is feeling better. He's still starting off a bit stiff, but he loosens up and works through it eventually. I've been massaging the muscles in his left hind with liniment and doing lots of stretches, so hopefully we'll get all that scar tissue worked out soon.
Monday was the first "real" ride we did since the whole saddle-fitting debacle. I had done a few light walk/trots, but Monday I put him through a full hack and he was an absolute peach -- quiet, responsive, and perfectly happy. He picked up the right lead on the first try and cantered both directions just as quiet as you please. Progress!
Today, we met Heather and Gigi for an afternoon ride. It was blustery but sunny, and Salem was a bit "up" since he had Tuesday off. He was also a little bit riled up by having other horses out there with us, since I usually ride him alone -- but he certainly needs to learn to mind his manners even when in company. We had a few bratty moments where he did some minor testing (moving sideways with ears pinned at the trot, leaping and bucking at the canter), but it was pretty minor and we worked through it. He was very forward, so I just worked on staying quiet and trying to slow my seatbones.
Of course, since we rode with Heather, I obviously couldn't ride in her saddle. Lucky for me, another boarder had offered to let me ride in hers if I needed to. Her saddle is a Devoucoux. An $8000 Devoucoux, I might add. And, let me just say, I absolutely loff that saddle! It is comfy and squishy and my leg felt like it had finally found its home. Even when Salem went leaping and cavorting around, I felt like I was superglued to that saddle. *sigh* How can I ever go back to a craptastic saddle when I have ridden in the Golden La-Z-Boy of saddles? (Seriously, does anyone need to buy a kidney? I have an extra one just layin' around...just sayin')
Gigi snapped some pics of the beginning of our ride, so hopefully I will have those to post soon. In the meantime, I am off to look for spare change under the sofa cushions.
5 hours ago