I submitted my Freestyle Level 2 audition

Still (horse) crazy after all these years

It took three years to complete all the steps of submitting the second half of my Level 2 audition and suddenly here it is. I’ll find out in 4 to 6 weeks what the assessment team thinks of me ‘n’ River dancing to J.S. Bach:

It’s a journey

It’s taken me a long time to let go of my need to do all of my auditions with Rocky, my “real” levels partner. But he’s been lame since February 13, and last month the x-rays showed “navicular changes” for the first time. He’s in orthopedic shoes now — or at least, I hope he is, as he keeps throwing the one off his right front foot — and soon we’ll be able to get back into playing with him on the ground to get him back into good physical condition.

Whether he’ll be able to continue as a riding partner, we won’t know for several more months,. We need to see how he responds to his new shoes, Previcox (NSAID), and new conditioning program before we can decide how to proceed. In the meantime, I’m reading about conditioning and dressage, and exploring the Straightness Training program to see if it’s appropriate for him.

Rocky hasn’t been consistently sound the whole 7+ years that I’ve had him, but I know he did everything he could to be sound for Scott’s first 2 years of Parelli. The beauty of the journey is that Rocky made that effort for us, and ensured that Scott could develop to the point where Scott can now form partnerships with other horses for our lessons and continuing progress. Of course Rocky is still our partner — our friend, teacher, student, and companion — and we will continue to come up with activities in which he can become “smarter, calmer, braver and more athletic.” Whatever “more athletic” is going to mean for him.

Categories: Auditions, Freestyle | Tags: , | 1 Comment

I passed my Level 2 On-Line audition

When I first started freelancing, I had to commute barefoot on hardwood floors 20 feet to my desk, uphill both ways. A few years later I found a shortcut — I bought a laptop that weighed slightly more than a farrier’s anvil and kept it on the floor by my bed. On those days when I couldn’t face the traffic in the hallway but needed to get to work right away, I could lean out dangerously over the edge and haul my computer up to, yes, sit on top of my lap. When I became more prosperous, I installed a hydraulic lift to spare my back during this precarious commute.

In these modern times, I barely commute at all. Now I can check email from my phone first thing and address any work fires immediately.  (If you work on the west coast but have coworkers and clients on the east coast, you know what I mean about checking email as soon as possible after 5am Eastern time.) If I can send a brief answer, I do so from the phone. If I need more screen real estate or want the luxury of larger keys, I can answer from my iPad. That clears any bottlenecks for my colleagues and buys me time to pet a horse before breakfast.

But this morning, my eyes locked onto one subject line and I could not even skim the others until I had read it thrice:

Congratulations on passing your Level 2 On Line audition!

And even though I have a WordPress app on my phone and on my iPad, I patiently made myself deal with the work email. Then I completed my usual morning routine of teeth brushing, healthy breakfast, editing a few online help topics for a client just to get myself started. And as a preventative for diving into horseblogging and horseplay and not getting through the day’s quota.

My Audition

My Scorecard

The mastery student who evaluated me is Molly Sanders, who is my age and whose horsey background is similar to mine: horse-crazy childhood full of Breyer models and every possible encounter with real live horses, then years without horses, then in her mid-30s getting her first horse and finding Parelli. Somehow this similarity makes me feel even better about my audition — like I have been evaluated by someone who knows. Even though she didn’t know my backstory as she watched the video. Here is her bio on the Parelli Central website.

She also included a few articles to help me with the next step, both of which I read ages ago, and which I’m reading now with more understanding of how to put the principles into practice. Hopefully it won’t take me another two years to get the Freestyle video done for the rest of my Level 2. 🙂

Categories: Auditions, On-Line | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

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