I actually started riding two days early, though only for a couple minutes. C was out and riding, and I’d thrown a pad on because it seemed like a good idea to put one on before I was ready to hop on, and Fetti was being good. “What’s two days?” she says, and before I know it I’ve clipped reins to the halter and put on my helmet and we’re walking around in the dark like we never stopped.
My boyfriend came out for the next two rides and acted as “lead horse”, walking with us and taking the lead rope through the forest. Mostly it made me feel better. I’m not sure it mattered too much to Fetti – but it did help settle her spook in our forest-walk when suddenly a wild deer appeared! and stayed standing in the bushes eating. Sigh. I stuck it, it was fine.
On Saturday I timed it wrong, my usual riding buddies weren’t out there, so I hopped on and moseyed around by myself. Totally fine. A little up, but that’s normal enough for right now. As we passed the corner of the arena the horse that was turned out in there spun and took off at a gallop. Fetti teleported sideways. I did not stick it. Instead, I went pretty well straight down and swore. She stood, very politely, as I gathered myself back together. I hobbled to the nearest mounting block, hopped back on, rode a few more laps, and called it good. Sliding off hurt too.
Boyfriend chided me for not requesting his help at the barn when I admitted to riding alone and falling off. I’m not sure it would have made too much difference, but I do have instructions not to ride solo for at least a little bit. He may be right.
Two rides later, while I had ground crew walking with me, Fetti threw a minor bronc fit with a buck or two. She bucked straight; I stuck it. I swore. My ground crew was impressed. I was pissed. None of us had any idea what set her off – so whatever it was, it was a major overreaction on her part.
It’s time for better living through chemistry.