By Violet Barnett, Communications Intern
Hi all! My name is Scarlet, and I am part of the Giant Steps herd. I consider myself the boss. I have the first stall in the barn, and I’d say it’s because I’m very important. Even though I’m one of the younger horses in the barn, I have no problem being sassy showing everyone who is in charge (which is me). But, what I love even more than being the head mare, is my job. In fact, I’d like to give you a peek into my daily life at the barn.
My morning starts when I get my breakfast. I like to begin my day by relaxing and chomping on some hay—keeping an eye out to make sure everyone stays in line. At around 9:30 am, volunteers start to arrive. They begin to tack up the horses and start barn chores, but I’m sure I could do any of them. Soon, a volunteer steps into my stall to groom me for my first lesson. Although I don’t always love it, I know I have to look nice for my rider.
Before I know it, a volunteer leads me into the Giant Steps arena. I like to look around and see what the instructor has set for the day—any challenge I know I can tackle with my rider! I patiently wait at the mounting block, maybe giving my sidewalker a nibble or two (just to remind them who is really in charge of this lesson.) When my rider hops on, I know it’s time to go. As we take our warm up laps, I try my best to listen to the rider’s commands and calm any nerves they may have, perhaps with a playful snort or toss of my head. I am totally focused when our lesson begins as we start to practice skills such as turning and transitions. I love to go on trail rides during lessons too and feel the sun on my shiny, chestnut coat. I try my best to sense my rider’s commands, vocal or not, and gently follow them. I patiently wait until they are ready to practice an exercise, and I try my best to successfully complete it together. When my lesson is over, I bid farewell to my rider and am led back to my stall. Although it’s sad, I am happy for the break in my busy schedule and I know I will see them again soon.
To pass some time before my next lesson, I love to get turned out. Currently, I don’t have a turn out buddy, but this lets me recharge before my next class (although I’m sure I could do every class). I always get excited when a volunteer comes to get me for my second class, I can’t wait to start all over again! After my second class, my day starts to wind down. (Unless it’s Saturday when I get to join three lessons.) I get hay (yay!) around 4:00 and I love to eat it in my stall and laugh at the humans doing all the work. At around 5:00, the volunteers and instructors leave, but not without giving me a goodbye pat. I, of course, give them by full attention (they should be grateful) with a nuzzle or kiss. Then, it’s time for bed until I start again the next day!