In Which Jane Yells “Pick Me” and Gets…Picked?!

One of the trainers at our barn needed a bit of barn help.  Did I mention she’s a terrific instructor? Positive.  Cheerful.  She knows how to use her words.

Given some of the life events over the last year or so, I haven’t um, exactly ridden much.  Oh I’ve been packed around daily.  Not the same as real riding.

Riding: that state in which you tell the horse what to do? And meandering doesn’t just “happen”? And tack is involved? And you sit upright, instead of laying your head on horse’s butt while he grazes?

Trainer put the word out she was looking for someone she could teach to help her out on the ground, preferably with some horse knowledge.  If we knew of anyone, let her know.

Ever the mature 3rd grader, I thrust my hand in the air and waved wildly. “I will!! I will!!”

In front of other people.  (Sadly, I am not exaggerating.  Points for enthusiasm?) Gah.

Momentarily taken aback, she said, “Really…?” Pause. “You want to…?”

I had one horrible moment of very adult embarrassment, presuming she was thinking: “How will I politely get rid of this ancient broad who might fall and not get up?”

This is usually an agreement for the 20-something beginning rider.  Not the 50-something sort-of rider that trainer has watched dozing on Hudson’s butt.

Luckily, she was actually thinking (or so she claims): “It could work? I won’t have to spend so much time training…”

I can do many key things: bandages, blankets, basic grooming, lunging, tacking up, read body language, and stay out of the strike zone. I don’t panic.  I’ve uncast horses, treated abscesses, can give shots, eye medication, deworm, check capillary refill rate and know when a tendon is iffy.

Most importantly, it’s possible I’m the best carrot-dispenser on the planet.

It’s the riding part I’ve never quite gotten down.

Hudson was a bit put out.  He’d begun to enjoy doing a lot of nothing outside his paddock.  After our first few rides however, he came out of the arena on jetpacks, proud as proud could be: every stride swung with “I’m a working man. Did you SEE that? I am AWESOME.”

You sure are, buddy!

19 thoughts on “In Which Jane Yells “Pick Me” and Gets…Picked?!

  1. Glad you are back! I had just found this blog when you took your hiatus! I have been leading a horse since around the same time.. I am now an adult re-rider who is seriously considering buying my first as an adult horse this summer. I also have this crazy idea I want a Missouri Fox Trotter.. Crazy part: I’ve never met one, or ridden a gaited horse.. But I will!! Keep posting! It’s inspiring!

    1. The mares held a secret sorority meeting once they realized I was the new ‘mare’ on the block. I think it’s a rule. Nothing good comes out of sorority meetings to which one is not invited? Next up! 🙂
      (Thanks for the encouragement!)

  2. I’m soooo glad you’re back! Hey, 50 is NOT ancient. I’m going on (YIKES!) 70 and bought my first horse when I was 60–an unbroke fjord! Now we ride and drive. I think that lazing about on a horse’s rump while he’s grazing is just fine.

    1. Can totally tell you have been a life-long horse person, whether the Fjord is your first horse or not. Horse people do not think twice about going for what they want! Riding *and* driving? You go, Girl! (Drove a team of draft horses one time. WAY harder than I thought it would be. The Ferris Wheel didn’t help, but I was so good to have the real driver right next to me.)

      Absolutely right, 50 is not ancient, especially for a horse person. We don’t seem to age at the same rate as the rest of the population. (I’m not exactly the poster girl for The Maturity of Middle Age.) I plan to ride and doze on horses butts well into the Era of Acting Our Age. I put that at about 110. I feel lucky. 50-ish folks rarely get a shot at this sort of arrangement!

    1. As usual, I have no firm idea of posting schedule, but I expect, given my darn good luck, and access to an even bigger pool of horse personalities, I won’t lack material. 😉

    1. Ditto what I said to Bella! FYI, Hudson and I may try to steal Ginger. Getting to know her on a one to one basis, I’m totally falling for her. Special special girl. If she goes missing, check behind the trees in Hudson’s paddock.

  3. ahem – you forgot to mention that said trainer LOVES her new assistant (you!) and is equally impressed with your knowledge & Hudson’s!

    1. Spoken like a true friend. At least you were one of the people standing there when I yelled “pick ME!”. I get to embarrass myself in front of you, lol. 😉

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