Well I knew we'd hit 'the wall' sooner or later, it's always just a question of time with each one. Yesterday I had a lesson, the second time in the indoor arena. I was introduced to a mini-me meltdown like no other in which Jr was channeling his mother from some of her worst days (before I got her). There were tons of distractions including horses being lunged nearby, other horses in the arena, etc. The lesson started out great and we were getting over tracking at the walk, bigger/longer and more powerful strides at the trot and right lead canter departs. The one issue I've had and it become the straw that broke the little twits back was dropping the left shoulder and blowing through the right rein/bulging through making the left lead a bit more of a challenge to get consistently. Attempts to address that resulted in sucking back and just full blown quit, refusal to move forward and all out buck, kick, bronc balling tantrum. My riding instructor got out the lunge whip to help which fortunately did succeed in forward and at times quite nice expression and canter departs with the big jump/step. I could tell I was running out of pony so we stopped after we repeated a few good circles with nice transitions but still with the lunge whip. Not sure if 'that' was 'the' mistake or not but it took me 45 minutes to load the little twit to go home. He, who is usually great at loading, put on the breaks and repeated the meltdown - rearing, kicking, striking........of course I was prepared and no injuries occurred and HE DID GET HIS ASS ON THE TRAILER WITH NO ASSISTANCE FROM ANYONE ELSE. I won that battle of the wills....I have a feeling I need to get in shape for a few more. Fortunately at 14.2 and short-backed even at my small size I was able to use dressage whip and lead line to provide him only one option - you go forward and you go forward into the trailer <period> or you meet the boss mare's response to your refusal. He pretty much self-loaded by the time we succeeded in getting his entire body on to my trailer.
He's still quite athletic with his kicking (for those who don't remember this is the one who kicked me in the face and broke my nose and shattered my facial bones/orbit when he was close to 6 months old) which is why when others offered to help I declined out of concern for their safety. I have plans to trail ride him later and I think we'll be doing lots of trotting and canter out on the trails with expectations of very crisp transitions upward........Oh greenie meanies, they are fun but I was exhausted after I got home yesterday and appreciated the fact that I had already ridden the mustang (who was perfect).