Friday morning, I did a light ride on Hans early in the morning. He was on his toes but really listening, so I was excited for my lesson later. My barn owner, Lucy Tidd, was also at this show, so I helped braid and wrangle her young horse (who did great in her first show since last year) for her morning rides.
While I was doing my warm up on my own before JJ arrived for my lesson, Hans and I had an unfortunate experience. The rings we were in at Tryon have raised walkways running alongside the rings. They are just a bit above eye level for the horses, and many horses find them a bit disconcerting. Hans was already a bit jumpy about things going on there, and while we were trotting along, someone who was walking there accidentally dropped some things they were carrying. They fell to the floor with a crash, and Hans spooked, spun, and bolted off. He was truly terrified. This really rattled him, and I never successfully got him to settle, although he did get better. JJ patiently helped me work him through his spooking and tension, which involved a lot of shoulder-in, circles, and enlarging the line I was on from my inside leg to slowly get him closer to the places in the ring that were hard for him.