I was shocked the first time I saw someone talking on their cell phone while mounted. I’m amazed at how acclimated to technology one can become.
The other day, I saw Bella cantering cardio laps on Dinero, and waved, calling out a hello before I realized she was on the phone. Oops. My bad. Almost interrupted her call. She dropped the reins on Dinero’s neck, so she could wave back. She said something into the phone. Picked up the reins. I went on down to the barn.
Shaun called me the other day, to see if I needed her to pick anything up from the store on her way home from work.
“Are you at the barn?” she asked.
“Yup”, I said, shifting the phone to a better place against my ear. I hate that it’s impossible to cradle a cell phone between ear and shoulder.
“What’s your ETA for being home?” she asks.
“Dinero, knock it off“, I say firmly, jiggling the lead rope. He’s trying to sneak past his ponying position.
“What?!” says Shaun, startled. “Did you just tell me to knock it off? Knock what off?”
Hudson starts jigging underneath me. Oh. I have the Dinero’s lead and Hudson’s reins in the same hand. I accidentally shook the reins. Interesting response. Wonder if he could learn to passage with a jiggle of the reins?
“Sorry honey, I was talking to a horse.” I say.
“A talking horse? I think you’re breaking up?” Shaun says, “the line is kind of…jumpy.”
I almost blurt out the line is jumpy because the horse I’m on is bouncing and the horse I’m ponying is picking at him. Luckily, I remember The Handbook.
Do not discuss immediate horse issues with spouse while on the back of said horse. It kind of freaks them out. They want you to get off and stuff. Never tell your spouse your horse is bucking while you’re talking on the phone.
“Okay” I say, “Let me try calling you in a bit.”
I called her later, and forgot about the episode, except to decide that talking on my cell while handling two horses with one hand was not a bright idea. It’s kind of right up there with stupid. For me, at least.
Out of the blue this weekend, Shaun brought up that call, and said “You were on the back of a horse, weren’t you?”
I’m a terrible liar. I hedge, and answer “sort of..”
We both know this means yes, I was on a horse. You can’t be sort of on a horse. She’s been thinking about this? Why has she been thinking about this?
“You said: knock it off, Dinero. When you called later, you said you rode Hudson?” “Why would you tell Dinero to knock it off if you are on Hudson?.” This is rhetorical.
In a court of law, the Defense Attorney knows to ask only questions to which they know the answers. Shaun should have been a lawyer. I’m doomed.
“I was riding Hudson and ponying Dinero, you know, like I usually do”, I say, trying to deflect.
She is so not deflected. I see her lips tighten. I try not to cringe. I want to confess immediately and rend my clothing, beg the court for mercy.
“And you answered the PHONE while you were riding and ponying?” she says.
“I know, I know…I knew right away I blew it?” I say, perversely sounding like I knew nothing of the sort.
Shaun puts her hand over her face. Her voice is muffled and full of pain.
“Please tell me you do not text and ride.” she says.
Whew. Won’t have to lie. (She DID ask me to say that.)
“I do not text and ride”, I repeat back to her.
“Repeat after me”, she says, “I will no longer text from the back of a horse for any reason.”
Sigh. There goes texting Daisy and asking her to pick up a pizza for family night…
There are horses on which it would never occur to me to touch the cell for any reason. (Hudson is not one of them.)
What is your personal cell phone policy?