Saturday, November 30, 2013

I Spooked and Bombay Didn't

I took Bombay out alone on a trail ride today.  I hadn't ridden him in a while, because either someone keeps biting him, or he's found some sharp spot along the fence or railings to scratch himself on and every time that I see him he has another chunk taken out of his fur and/or skin.  I don't like putting a saddle pad over open sores and cuts.

Bombay has been behaving in a grumpy manner, which is usually a sign that he's not getting enough attention from me, or stimulation in general.  Sometimes he gets outright jealous when I ride Rock and not him.  So, I've made a point of doing something with him every day for the past few days, and his mood has improved considerably.

While I was leading him around and tightening his cinch, I remembered that I forgot to pick up the mail yesterday.  Then I thought, "This is about the time that the mail carrier arrives on Saturdays.  Maybe I should hold off on riding until he comes."

But then I thought, "Nah, what are the chances that the mail carrier will drive up to our mailbox in the same second that I am riding up the driveway or crossing the street?"

So, I mounted and rode Bombay up the driveway, and sure enough, here came the mail carrier, racing from box to box like a bat out of hell.  I pushed Bombay to go faster, because if he was going to spook, I didn't want to get dumped on the rocks or the pavement.  I still hold my breath when I cross the street and relax when I get up onto the dirt.  Fortunately, I got him to the other side of the street before the mail truck reached my house.  The truck is very loud and rickety, and the mail carrier slams all the mailboxes as he goes.

While passing a bush, two quail flew out right in front of Bombay's face, just missing him and I jumped and let out a little gasp of surprise, but Bombay just kept trudging along like it never happened.  Woo-hoo!   You don't know how long I've been waiting for him to be like that.  Yes, you do.  It's been about 14 years.  I've been riding him for 10 of them, and he's been spooking left and right the majority of that time.

There's this narrow, winding trail I've been admiring but hadn't yet taken because I've always been under time constraints while riding, but I had all day today and could afford to get lost.  All I did was look in the direction of the trail and Bombay took it, even though it led further away from home when the trail we were on led straight to home.  It was a beautiful ride, because all this green ground cover has sprung up from recent rains, and the scenery included more cacti and less bushes.

When we reached a 3-way intersection, I dropped the reins and told Bombay that since he's been such a good boy, he could pick which way he wanted to go.  He decided to blaze his own trail, so I had to steer to get him back on track.  But the good news is that he didn't take the trail toward home.  He seemed to be enjoying his time out just as much as I was.


redhorse said...

That's the funniest title you ever wrote, but it sounds like you had an amazing ride. You must be so proud of yourself to stick with something so long, and now you have what you dreamed of. Congratulations.

Allison B said...

Good horse!! Doesn't it feel great for to see them being so calm and cool, after waiting for it to happen for forever? Yay for you and Bombay!

Crystal said...

I love it when horses don't spook, specially if us riders do! That's exciting :) and I love when they are happy to be out and not go home when they have the chance.

Cheryl Ann said...

Good boy! I was on Lucille once when she spooked. The wind was blowing the trees next to the arena. Of course, her spook was pretty mild! :-)

Andrea Kuska said...

Good job Bombay!

achieve1dream said...

Yay Bombay!! Sounds like a lovely time spent out on the trails. :D