Today, Anjolina and Dovie took Carmel and LaLa to a 4-H show two blocks away. I headed to the park on Diego to expose him to more excitement. He really didn't want to go by himself, but he grudgingly did what I asked.
Just after making the left turn one block down, he stopped and then seemed to be willing to walk nicely. Suddenly, he spooked out from under me. It was a classic Arab sideways spook, not a deliberate bucking frenzy, or anything like that. I landed on my back, and he pulled away, slipped, and fell on his butt. He got up and trotted towards home as if nothing had happened. Judy, who lives next door, was riding her horse and helped me grab him. He has a few minor scrapes, and my back will probably be sore for a few days. No big deal for either of us.
I led him back to the park, found a mounting block, and got on. He was a little spooky until I found Carmel and LaLa. After that, he practically fell asleep watching the competition. Carmel didn't want to do anything without LaLa, so we rode LaLa and Diego into the arena for the "lineup" after one of the classes. Diego actually did better than LaLa, though that isn't saying much.
When he stops, a light tap or two from the crop is working nicely. He moves forward without acting like he's thinking about exploding.
I should have told you, but we're giving him a little grain every night so he won't feel left out when everyone else gets theirs. (Awww)