Ah yes. It's turning out to be exactly as I had suspected all along.
A big group is simply not good for her. Too much stress, too much irritation.
I found her in the dry lot with Jade (one of the mares she actually likes) and Charlie Brown, a sweet old gelding who she is neutral about. Despite the fact that it is connected to the outside run around the pastures that has SCARY fencing...I am happy with her there. She was more like herself than I've seen her in a while today.
It was super windy, but she never cares about the wind so I rode her bareback and we had a fun little ride. Just some walking, working on bending and softening. I tried to trot but I'm so out of shape I was jabbing her mouth and flopping around so I gave up and thanked her for putting up with the horrible experience. LOL.
My friend and her boyfriend came out, and they both took turns having a bareback ride (lead around of course). Amber LOVES to give pony rides. She would be an excellent lead line candidate. And she is always so good.
As usual, her ground manners were impeccable. Again, still not understanding what problem Andrea has because she's incredibly easy to handle.
I also spoke to the daughter of an old old trainer of mine, who is boarding some horses there for her therapeutic lessons. She's a little younger than me and her mother moved to Minnesota, and she is continuing the work here. She said Andrea had also complained to her about the ground manners of one of her horses. She said she doesn't understand what Andrea is talking about, because she worked with him per Andrea's request and said he was fine, just as he always is.
Further supporting my theory that Andrea just doesn't know how to handle some horses. It's not just Amber that this is going on with - says a hell of a lot!
Either way, we are out of there soon enough.
I love my mare so much. She is so good natured and so forgiving.
Don't know if I mentioned this, but jumping over 18"-2' is out for us. Farrier noted her hocks are too straight. And I do think he's right. I do think dressage will be something she is good at when she gets in shape. Watching her in side reins she really has the form for it. Suspension will come a little more with fitness.
Whatever we do, even if we decide to quit it all and just go hack around and have fun...she's the love of my life. I trust her more than I've trusted any horse in a very, very long time.