The Beauty Found in Education
By the time Relámpago was three and a half he was pretty unmanageable for me due to his size and strength. It would have been different if I had focused a little more on educating him in the little things while we worked on his recovery but I was young and hadn't raised such a large horse before. I recognize now... I should have had more guidance. But finding that guidance was hard due to geographical location. Regardless Relámpago taught me countless lessons I will always remember.
Over the past few years while Relampago was recovering I had been taking lessons with a couple of trainers. I learned to do some hunter jumping and then found someone who did a little dressage. It wasn't very pro dressage but I got to ride this guys P.R.E. and Friesian stallions which I loved.
I learned a lot during that time about riding and training since this trainer had over 30 horses. I got to ride a variety of temperaments and breeds in exchange for working around his farm. I can't say it was the most pleasant learning experience though as the man seamed to have some kind of personality issue and liked to play psychological games with people. Nothing weird mind you just extremely annoying. So I left that place after a couple of short years.
I was once again left on my own to try to work out what to do about Relámpago's training. I decided to do a Bachelors degree online in Equine Studies. This gave me the opportunity to continue developing my sculpture while building it up as a professional business and keep Relámpago close while learning with him. This was a great time in my life because I got to dive into equine massage therapy for which I organized a couple of clinics among my local friends with a wonderful woman who was doing equine massage at the time.
I also got to learn about equine chiropractics, veterinarian care, equine performance, western and dressage training. I did all of this online. I was the first generation of students to complete a four year Bachelors of Science degree online. A lot of people told me it was a waist of time... But I knew if I had gone away to school I would've had to say good bye to Relámpago for a very long time and leaving him with no training was out of the question. I didn't have the cash to bring him along or to leave him behind with a trainer. Nor did I know a trainer I could trust.
I found a man who had recently come from Sevilla, Spain. He didn't speak English very well but we were able to communicate and his training style was similar to what I had learned in earlier years on those Frisian and P.R.E. stallions. So we loaded Relámpago up in his trailer and asked to start him very slowly from the ground. He said in broken English "sure, sure... I start my horses very slow and make sure you are very happy when you come to see him"
It didn't turn out as I had expected nor was I very happy with the results...
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