Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Beers and Bribery

After our exciting weekend, I anticipated our Monday lesson would be eventful. I showed up to find a hurricane already brewing. There was a driving wind and rain outside. My lesson HAD to be indoors.

A new wall of mirrors was being installed in the indoor arena. But the installation was running over time. A brewski-fueled barn-raising party was in full swing. My instructor, beer in hand already, decided this was a PERFECT time to work over cavalletti.

Our route through the maze is shown in red:

I was resigned and ready for anything. Imagine my surprise when.....

Armani was good.

Really good actually. He was nervous but responsive. He worked excellently over the cavalletti.

"Look at Armani!" I exclaimed, "Good boy!", as we trotted over them.

"Yup! He looks really good today!" My instructor was dipping back into the beer stash. "Why do you think he's so good today - with all this going on", she waved around, "after being such a s#*! this weekend?"

I pondered a moment... "Because I gave him two sugar cubes before I got on?"

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Humble pie

I had sworn my friends to secrecy over our little accident on Saturday.
Armani was full of vitriol again on Sunday. 

My husband was at his parents over the weekend. He was due back Sunday for dinner. Hmm... I couldn't tell him could I?
Now I don't ever feel guilty... Not me. Ever.

I hurried home from the barn. I cleaned up the house. I showered and put on a cute outfit. I made a nice dinner and lit candles. I even made an apple pie.

My husband walked in.

"So, what did you do wrong?"

I admit I confessed.

Monday, March 15, 2010

When pigs fly

We're having some rough weather up here. The wind has been whipping, driving rain with it. And Armani has continued to challenge me. I joke about his "stomping and snorting" like a rhinoceros.

On Saturday, we went on a trail ride with friends. Armani snorted and bounced with defiance.

As we got half way around our loop, the other horses began acting nervous. They appeared scared of a patch of woods. This patch has been known to unnerve horses - why I'll never know. Feeling bold, I pushed Armani forward, as did another rider on her mount.

Suddenly that horse spooked and bolted into us. I felt her stirrup hook around my ankle. Armani threw his head up and jumped. But I was yanked out of my saddle by the other, taller horse, as he sped away. Fortunately my foot got free.
But I was in thin air.

I had just a split second to think "I'm coming off between two horses, must not land under either one." I rolled. I managed to avoid getting tromped on too much.

I looked up. Armani had stopped a short distance away and was staring at me as if to say, "WTF are you doing down there?" The other horses had stopped and one rider dismounted and grabbed Armani.

I was all ready to say, "I'm ok! Everyone good?" but I found my right lung felt like a flat tire. I heaved. No air would come in. I waved. One of my friends came over and slapped my back. I managed to gasp in some air. Finally I was able to insist I was "Ok" and that "nothing feels broken".

I remounted and we rode home. Armani wasn't the least bit sorry, naturally. He continued to "stomp and snort" for the whole mile and a half home.

I had a lesson scheduled the next day. My ribs and my ankle were sore. I had whiplash in my neck. Funny - I don't have any idea how I pulled my neck.

My instructor asked if I had come off of Armani before. "No." I said. "He's fallen down on top of me before. But my legs were still around him. So that doesn't count!"

"Well there is a first time for everything. Hope you are happy!"

"Yeah!" I said.