Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Tuesdays With Texas Chapter 4 ( A Lesson For Me)
I left off with Texas as a 3yr old part way into training. I started using Tex a lot to take out the trail rides, at that time he was a good lead horse before I kinda ruined him.....oh I'm getting ahead of myself - he could lead or take up the rear. I used to like being in the back because then you always got a first hand view of the entertainment.....and trust me no matter how well you checked the gear and matched horses to people .....something always happened. On one particular day while in the rear I thought I would incorporate a little training as well. I never expected our so far uneventful ride would turn into a bit of a gong show, with Tex and I as the main attraction. We were pretty close to home maybe only 20 to 30 minutes out, we were just kind of ambling along, the trail got narrow with pretty steep hills on either side. I decided that was a good place to get Tex going up and down hills properly.....well I guess it was one of Texas's no way days( again)we started up the hill and he decided he didn't want to go, it got a wee bit scary hung up in the middle of a really ....really steep hill. So I applied a little spur pressure....well probably more than a little....lets just say he took exception to it....however we made it to the top of the hill. So we sat there for a bit thinking on the experience...when my friend S heading the ride asks if everything is OK, my reply was yeah go ahead we'll be along. She later informed me we had made quite a racket and had the whole attention of the ride. So anyhow I'm ready to go and I'm looking down that hill and I'm thinking to myself......you idiot ....it was pretty daunting.....what do you do - what goes up must come down......and believe me we came down. We were only about 1/4 of the way down...now you have to remember Tex was just a youngster with no experience on how to go about managing such a monumental task. I did all the things I thought I was supposed to aid him in this lesson and then the #*#% hit the fan. I don't know if he bucked or what happened but the next thing I know he and I are rolling down the hill...we landed in a heap at the bottom with me stuck underneath him. He scrambled to his feet and all the while I'm still underneath him.....do you think he would move out of the way ...not a chance, when I figured out I was not dead or injured and capable of movement the adrenaline took over and I got mad. Here's this horse standing over me ( insert sarcasm - aimed at myself) not helping the situation in the least....had I taken the time and kept my cool I would have noticed the poor horse was shaking like a leaf.........instead from underneath him ( I admit shame at this point) I kinda put the boots to him to get him away from me....that could have gone so wrong.....thankfully he was smarter than me and just moved off and away from me. Meanwhile just on the other side of a little creek S and the other riders are watching us with their eyes big as saucers......big oops didn't know we had an audience....not my proudest moment...... for sure! Anyhow I gathered up my poor scared horse and we carried on home. When I put Tex in the tie stall to take his gear off I could see he was trembling uncontrollably, he was also pretty mad at me (rightly so) I could tell he didn't really want me touching him, I carefully and quietly took his gear off and then I started checking him out, I talked to him and ran my hands over him until he finally quit shaking. He had a few cuts and scrapes ....all minor thank goodness. I groomed him and fed him a few treats and got ready to turn him loose......I was feeling pretty crappy about myself and how I handled the situation.....I think Tex could feel my angst and about then he decided to forgive me.....he stuck his nose in the crook of my arm and just rested his head there for a bit....my feelings for this horse bubbled to the surface and I started to cry.....I'm going to say it was a delayed reaction to the near miss rather than the fact that I'm a big baby. That day was a huge learning experience for both of us.