Saturday, May 26, 2007
My boyfriend and I are down in Redmond, Oregon this weekend attending the Walkabout Tour with Clinton Anderson. Clinton is a natural horsemanship trainer originally from Australia. He moved to the States ten years ago and has been teaching people how to gain respect from their horses at various clinics and with his show, Downunder Horsemanship, on RFD-TV. I get a kick out of him. He has a pretty good sense of humor and obviously is very passionate about what he does. I was pretty impressed with him today. He really went non-stop all day. When he wasn't in the ring, he was signing autographs in a booth and answering questions. Even after his long day, he told everyone he would stay after until every ones questions were answered. Now that is dedication! The tickets to the Redmond event were free and he gave lots of his products away. They had a raffle as well and all the money goes to a therapeutic riding program in Texas, so I have to buy one tomorrow.
Today he worked with Sherry Cervi, a two time World Barrel Racing Champion, to demonstrate some techniques for better barrel racing. He worked with a 6 year old Thoroughbred from the track that he referred to as a "crack head" because she was so amped up. By the end of the day, after at least an hour of lateral flexion drills and one rein stops, he got her to trot easy on a loose rein. She was a trembling mess when she first came in and it was great to see the transition.
He did a great liberty demonstration with his mare, Mindy. This is a picture of her laying down on command when they were all done. It was really beautiful to see horse and human so connected, I got tears in my eyes. I told my boyfriend it wasn't about the amazing performance, it was really just the way she looked at him. I know that sounds a little cheesy, but I think as horse owners, we all strive to get that "look", that understanding.
We are looking forward to tomorrow. There is a trailer loading demostration I want to see. This is a shot of Clinton signing someones boot.