by Pico ヨハネス
Bad horsey! Earning a horse's respect.
The horses were lined up and those who needed help were given the necessary assistance. I climbed aboard without difficulty. I gave Champ a “so far so good” pat on the neck. He promptly stretched out and bit about a three-inch wide chunk out of the ass end of the horse in front of us. Maybe I heard his name wrong and they had called him Chomp. This did not bode well.
We started down the trail. Things were pretty muddy because it had drizzled all morning. The air smelled damp but fresh and clean. We meandered along enjoying the ride. Champ understood staying with the group but not much more. When the trail widened out it would have been nice to pull alongside one of my friends so we could chat. Champ didn’t pay much attention to my commands though and I had to be content to just be part of the herd. I started thinking they’d maybe called him Chump. I did my best to enjoy the fall colours along the trail knowing full well that Champ thought me the chump. If I’d known the future, I would not have been content with him running the show.
Further along, the group decided to leave the trail and make their way across an open field. We filtered through some trees along the trail to get there. Champ picked a bad spot and I could see right away that the horse could fit through the gap but not with a rider. I pulled back on the reins and he responded… at first. As soon as I thought we were good, Champ jumped through. I took a tree trunk to each knee, popped out of the saddle and got shunted right off the back of the horse. I tried to hang on but only managed to keep the reins in my hands. I swung forward in front of Champ who lowered his head and plopped me down on my back in the mud. My friends thought the whole incident hilarious. Steam came out of my ears though. I scrambled to my feet, grabbed Champ’s halter and roughly pulled him close. We had a cheek to jowl chat right there. I told him how I felt. I told him I was going to get back on and he was going to behave himself. Then I did exactly that.
Champ behaved, as he should have in the first place. With mud on my back and on the side of my leg, the rest of the ride actually went well. Champ needed a firmer hand than I provided until he managed to cheese me off. I just wish the horse didn’t need me angry to respect me.