51% Off Private Riding Lessons
Hmm, I thought, probably just that skeevy place that's offered lessons before. The first time they did, I clicked through and thoroughly investigated. I was not impressed. First of all, I am not much interested in a "jack-of-all-trades" trainer who purports to be an expert in both English and Western. Yeah, I know they actually do exist, but IMHE I have found that usually these folks are Western riders who fancy themselves able to ride and teach English because they watched some DVDs or putzed around a little in one of those silly, pancakey hornless things that goofy English riders like to call saddles. You know what I mean. I prefer to stick with dedicated H/J trainers and barns.
So I hadn't much hope when I clicked on the email to open it. Okay, so the photo didn't show a little kid in a Western saddle being led around. Instead, it was an appropriately-dressed teenager taking a real jump in a nice ring on a well-groomed, albeit chunky (Draft cross?) Pinto. She was jumping horribly ahead (thank you, George, for pointing out this egregious fault in virtually every installment of "Jumping Clinic." Yes, I KNOW I probably do it, too) but otherwise it was a nice photo. This was a definite improvement! So what barn was it? For your entertainment, here's all that was said under the photo. The copywriters at Groupon sure do fancy themselves mighty witty:
"Horses require human guidance to keep from brushing against barbed wire, eating poisonous rocks, and galloping triumphantly into the ocean. Take the reins with today's Groupon."
Hardee-har-har. I clicked on the "View This Deal" button. And then almost fell out of bed, because... it was the exact barn I've been wanting to go to! YAHOO!!! What luck, indeed. Needless to say, my finger couldn't hit the "Buy Now!" button fast enough. I got two private lessons for the price of one. I prefer group lessons for the camaraderie, but since I'm so woefully out of shape I might as well not embarrass myself in front of others right off the bat.
As I was celebrating this amazing coincidence, I suddenly had a thought. The offer was limited to one per person, but I could buy another as a gift... I decided I couldn't get away with giving myself a gift, but there was nothing stopping Hubby from doing so. I texted him (he was already up - who needs a household intercom these days?) and asked very sweetly if I could have an early Valentine's present. Sure, he said, and bought me another package. *Blows kisses* Hurray!
So that, dear readers, is how I have found myself gaily anticipating FOUR excursions to this lovely barn, located only 15 minutes from home. I have several friends from my old barn who ride and board there now and have urged me to check it out. Lest you be wondering, there's not a thing wrong with my old place, other than that I would feel stupid showing up after a five-year hiatus. "Where have you been?" and all that. Not keen on having to say, "Off trying to make some money to buy my kids shoes, instead of spending it on me and my expensive habit."
I am especially happy to get to ride in my own saddle, which hasn't left the
I am also going to try and restrain myself from trotting down to the tack shop and trying on half chaps. Mine are still serviceable; the zippers work, the elastic bottoms are okay, there's still a little nap in the suede, etc. One seam is pulling apart a little on both. Mainly, they're just fugly. I simply want a new pair with Spanish tops, in brown this time. I prefer brown paddock boots and my Ariats are showing no signs of slowing down yet. This is what happens when you've never been, alas, more than a once-a-week rider (except for that brief interlude with Polly I've written about). I only WISH my boots were wearing out! :-) Same thing with my helmet. Nothing wrong with it, just... not au courant. I tried on the Ovation helmet I said I liked last time I was in the tack shop and of course, it fit, and of course, it looked pretty good, but again - I need to save my money for more lessons.
This Groupon was just the push I needed to gather my courage and head back to a barn. I'm not sure when I'll get over there - but I will ABSOLUTELY be writing about it when I do. That is, if my fingers are still functioning, because I know the rest of me will be in varying degrees of distress. I have no illusions as to my fitness level!
|Unfortunately, a lot more like it.|