As promised I have horse news. Tonight, while I should have been working on my report cards, I was out at the farm, hauling Bacardi to a local arena for a lady to try cattle penning off of. First, I would like to report that I have an unfair and firmly entrenched bias against cattle penners. (And this is just my opinion based on my experiences - it doesn't mean it's true.) Tonight, well, it didn't do anything to change my opinion. Unfortunately.
The evening began with me hauling the horse to the arena. The lady who we shall call the lady was there. I began warming up Bacardi. Next the lady got on. She did okay. My biggest peeve in life is when people think they know more and ride better than the reality. This lady talked BIG. Rode okay. This really did not help the anxiety I was feeling about someone cattle penning on my horse (remember my bias). My face froze in horror when she asked someone to run past her repeatedly at full speed. She wanted to "test" how Bacardi'd react under pressure. Seriously. I'm not kidding. She had complained to me that Bacardi was rearing on her. This made me move closer to the fence to watch what was going on because I can honestly say this is not something that I've experienced with the horse.
Well, her horse hand mouth contact was not good. One must release when one asks for a halt. Just say'n. And yes Bacardi was being very, very naughty. I offered to get back on her. The lady declined.
Anyhow, the entire time I was able to watch people race around with arms and legs flailing, mouths being pulled on. It was alarming and sad for me to watch. It really reinforced that this is not how I ride. This is not what I consider a fair representation of horsemanship or even stockmanship. It left me with a sour taste and an itchy feeling. I just wanted to leave. As quickly as I could. I barely cooled my horse out before tossing her (blanketed) in the trailer and headed home.
Do you want to know what makes this even worse??
Sunday I went and worked cattle at Jason's and she was outstanding. She was the best she's ever been. Literally, calm, cowy and freak'n awesome. Responsive and dare I say... fun? Almost (not quite) good enough to make me second guess selling her. Jeez. Let's add insult to injury...
I'll be off fixing her during spring break. And pondering the future. Sigh. Perhaps *gasp* working cow horse (at the lower levels) may be in the future.
I did promise horse news.