Last Sunday I took my friend, Jessie out to ride my horse, Girlfriend with me. Jess and I haven't seen each other since before my daughter was born and we have a lot in common so I was looking forward to hanging out. We took EJ with us and she stayed entertained taking video with Jessie's digital camera. So, we got my big horse oops on video - kind of.
Jessie used to ride English and worked at horse camps as a teen and seems to understand and be able to talk about how to ride better than I can. But she had never ridden Western and never ridden a horse with a hackamore and hasn't ridden for a few years. Still, whenever someone actually seems to know what they're talking about than me I seem to automatically assume they are better at stuff than me. So, I figured if I could ride Girlfriend then she could (not taking into account I have been riding her consistently for a year and have been taking lessons with her). So, Jessie got up on Girlfriend and I sat down on the mounting block on the far end of the arena. Girlfriend tried to trot a little but Jessie was able to hold her back, but then lots of stuff happened. I feel like narrating it like in the original Curious George book where all he says during a big fiasco was "and then something happened ... this ... and this ... and this ..." Jessie got confused because a hackamore feels a lot different than a bit, she shortened the reins which is what I do to collect Girlfriend right before we run (the shorter the reins, the faster I'm planning to go) Next thing I know, Girlfriend had taken off at a full gallop. I jumped up and tried to run to the other side of the arena to cut her off at the pass, but this is a huge arena and a galloping gaming horse is REALLY fast. Jessie lost her balance and Girlfriend panicked and bucked - which meant "ack! I want her off my back!" So, she went full speed and did a quick turn and threw Jessie right off into the wall with a loud thunk.
I got to the end of the arena just after Jessie got thrown off and Girlfriend was just standing there next to her looking relieved. But I was so upset and angry I looked at Girlfriend and for a split second had a vision in my head of grabbing the reins and beating her. But since I would never do that to a horse and I was more worried about Jessie, I turned around to see if she was ok. Apparently, according to the other girl riding in the arena, Girlfriend ducked her head and just slowly walked over to the arena door and hung her head. The mother of a girl who was in the hallway tacking up her horse came over to the arena door and held onto Girlfriend, although Girl was pretty obviously not going anywhere. Later, the other teenager (who drives me nuts as it is) said she was terrified that Girlfriend was going to turn around and go after her horse. This is a teenager who thinks she knows everything about horses and is always bragging about being the expert on natural horsemanship, but she screams at her horses and beats them and I don't want her anywhere near my horse. Anyway, I just said, "She won't go after your horse," when what I wanted to say was "Do you even know ANYTHING about horses and how they think and react???? Good fucking god." But that is a different subject.
Jessie was rolling back and forth on the floor making this horrible gasping noise and I told her not to move and was sure that she had broken her back. EJ meanwhile was crying and screaming for Jessie outside the arena and I yelled to her that everything was ok and I'd come get her in a minute. Then Jessie sat up and gasped out, "I'm Ok. Do you think EJ managed to get video of that?" At which point I knew she really was ok. So, I went and brought EJ into the arena to give her a hug and see she was ok, then said, "Let's get back on," which induced a "WTF???" look from Jessie before she said, "Oh yeah, that's right. I guess that's what you're supposed to do." This time I walked next to Girlfriend the whole time so that she knew I was the one in control and I could tell her to stop or slow down if need be. Things went fine, within a few minutes Jessie relaxed and then Girlfriend's whole body relaxed and they had made up with each other. Then EJ demanded she get to ride and I led her around the arena on a leadline. But I learned my lesson. First time anyone rides my ex-gaming rodeo champion horse, no matter what they say I am definitely walking next to them the first time they get on her just in case. Eeeeek.