I am a coach, trainer, and all around horse enthusiast. I long ago vowed allegiance to the “Church of the Horse” and I can say with absolute certainly that the Horse Gods of the Universe have, in their infinite wisdom, come up with a fool proof way to keep me safe in this inherently dangerous industry. The plan is as simple as it is brilliant. To remain safe I must remain injured!
Allow me to break it down for you.
Last year I purchased a horse, we’ll call him Samson, who was intended as a hunter prospect for my daughter. He’s a wonderfully talented horse with a canter to die for, a 10 plus jump, and a decent enough trot to take a piece of the hacks. He’s the whole package…almost!
Trouble is I, like so many of my middle-income clients, am on a bit of a budget. For me, horse shopping often resembles a death defying juggling act. It’s a daring, incredibly risky process, fraught with inherent danger and accompanied by a steep learning curve.
So, what does a rider on a budget purchase to blaze a trail in the hunter ring? The all mighty Thoroughbred, of course! For a rock bottom price you can get a horse with some training, plenty of miles (most of them ridden at mach 10), and a level of endurance that puts the Energizer Bunny to shame. They also have just enough crazy to make each ride a heart stopping, adrenaline filled adventure!
When I purchased Samson, I figured I’d struck gold. With a little spit and polish we’d be off to the races (pun definitely intended). Trouble is, Samson is an off-track Thoroughbred and as it turns out, he has very strong opinions about having other horses galloping past him! Actually, it turns out he has very strong opinions about a lot of things. Cold temperatures, wind, noise, horses entering the arena, horses exiting the arena. Any of these things has the ability to set him off, creating an explosion of epic proportions. So, when the vet informed me that I’d have to give Samson an entire month off to recover from minor bug bite surgery (entirely different story), I have to admit I was just the tiniest bit relieved.
I am an extremely confident and adept rider with more years of experience than I’d care to admit, but it was with much trepidation that I bid farewell to February and steeled myself for March’s inevitable rodeo show. No amount of cutting back on grain was going to help me now. I knew it, he knew it, and the Horse Gods of the Universe knew it too.
So, the day before that inevitable ride which we all knew was probably going to kill me I slipped on the ice, went down hard, and completely buggered my knee! The doctor has insisted I stay off of it, I keep it elevated, and do as little as possible. Under no circumstances am I to ride anything for the next six weeks. Truth be told, I’ve never felt happier or more alive in my life!