I cantered River last night. And survived. Without fearing for my life at all.
I also rode The Mare. She was... pleasant. She didn't have any bitchy moments. I can't even say how strange that is. She's normally a complete, total, absolute bitch. (Please note that I say this with love. I wouldn't change her if I could.)
Obviously, this means the world will be ending. Y'all should probably take care of anything you need to. (Is it wrong that I'm from Buffalo and I use "y'all"?)
Back to Princess.. he doesn't really get the whole canter aids thing. It goes like this: trottrottrot, sit, ask for canter, TROTTROTTROT, steady, trottrottrot, sit, ask for canter, TROTTROTTROT, steady, sit, ask for canter, TROTTROTCANTER.
We get there eventually, but it's not pretty. I didn't use my whip, which is probably what we need... but I wasn't sure enough of him or me to do it. Call me a wimp, but I didn't want to risk him doing something stupid. Once we've cantered a couple more times I'll probably feel safer. But we cantered I think 4 times, each going about once around the ring. I must say, I really like his canter. It feels big and forward without feeling out of control. It's pretty comfy, too, which will only improve with better balance and when he learns to use himself properly. We managed to canter a circle! I wasn't sure he'd be able to balance on a fairly small circle--the arena is only 50' wide--but he did fine. Thankfully, he's very easy to bring back to the trot. Probably too easy, to be honest, but right now I'm happy with a horse who isn't inclined to run off on me.
I'd also like to note that my lovely ride on my mare--who I have ridden for ~5 years and owned for over 3 years and have jumped 3' on--did not include any cantering. So we've got Princess, who I've had for less than a year and have only been seriously riding for less than two months. And then we've got The Mare. How is it my green OTTB is quieter, easier, and more sensible than my aged, broke mare? Okay, yes, she is a chestnut Thoroughbred mare, but still...
Also, I finally got pictures from a show I took The Mare to about three years ago....
(Yes, I've gained a ton of weight since then... switching from barn work to a desk job and then being unable to walk for months sucks. Granted, I've been as good as I'm going to get for like a year, so I can't use the cripple excuse anymore.)
See, I used to be able to ride! Gosh I love my mare...