What a lot of preparation our Intro to Parelli day took. Petra, Mark and I seemed to work flat out for the whole week leading up to Sunday. We got stuff printed, put up signs, took a trip to the dump, cleaned house, held a practise, picked up a port-a-potty, sent and answered endless emails, wrote press releases, drafted in extra help from Mark's son Clay, Petra's son Jani, our friend Denise....had lots of support from Sara and Linda - who also rode in the demo, of course, answered zillions of phone calls, borrowed 20 chairs, totally re-arranged the living room, groomed our horses, moved the stock trailer (and the playground fence!), dragged barrels and saddle stands all over the place, stacked straw bales on the flatbed trailer to make seating....and had a wonderful day!!
It was a slightly sedate demo, as the ground was wet and slippery. Iona did really well after all my worries. I felt that I got the rapport/respect balance better as the week went on. I tried to make every day different for her, but was very consistent about bringing her into the yard and giving her a hay net and then doing at least one session of something no matter how busy I was. That seemed to help her, and she started to look to come with me, rather than the herd, after feeding time. We didn't have as much impulsion on Sunday and we had during the last few days leading up to the demo. Maybe we just "peaked" a little early! LOL!! Or perhaps it was due to me trying to keep things extra "soft looking" for the crowd, as during the week I realised that she needed an effective phase four. Maybe I didn't really find it on Sunday.
However, we finished up with a bridle-less weave where I hardly used my carrot stick, and when I went to turn her out with the herd after we were done, I don't think she really wanted to leave me. THAT was worth more than any amount of showing off, as far as I was concerned!
As the day got closer we began to realise that we were going to get quite a few people turning out. We thought about 40. It was more like 60!!! Good thing we had thought out our parking strategy! We had people from most of the local towns and some from 100 miles or so away. I was amazed to discover that the lady down the road has a daughter (now in graduate school) who is a long-time Parelli student. Lots of people also had their first real taste of PNH, and lots have decided to sign up for Petra's lessons here, which is great! She has filled her Get Started group and nearly filled the Progressing group as well. These are scheduled for some Sundays over the coming months and it looks like they will spill over into the Saturday, too, in order to meet the demand. WOW!
After our outdoor demo, Petra showed some segments from the LIVE Celebration DVD. A few spotlights and Linda's talk on Horsenality. It was great to see people's faces as they watched these, and then were given Horsenality charts to fill out for their own horses. Petra had also arranged for her friend and student, Soraya, to give a short talk. Soraya is both a 4th Level dressage competitor and a keen Parelli L3 (or L4?) student. She was lovely and very down to earth with her presentation, and showed us some little clips of her riding both freestyle and in competition. I'm looking forward to seeing more of her, as she only lives about 30 minutes away. I could use a friend with some Finesse Savvy, for sure!
Here are some
Images from the Day
Petra and JB
Linda and Ducky
Me and Iona
Sara and Sis