So yeah, we worked further on connection, transitions within gaits, and outline, as usual. I didn't longe him before I rode -- his attitude and body language said I didn't need to. Plus, I really didn't feel like it. :) I'm glad he agreed! It's so nice to just hop on and start warming up. What's also nice is that we work through him being looky at the door, the mirrors, the chairs, the standards, the gremlins ... he doesn't react much, but he does tense and let himself get distracted. As TED put it a while ago, I'm really learning to be the pilot of this team. (Easier when your horse will let you and not fight about it.) I just figure that he's going to see a lot of unfamiliar things in his career as an eventer, so he better just get over these tiny things he sees every ride.
Seems like that there is the basis for the relationship I want with my horse, really. And days like that make me think simultaneously that this relationship is going to take time and effort and that hey, we could be having fun out there by this summer. Heh. :)