How do you know what you can handle when it comes to horses?
I’ve realized recently that I need to break-up with an idea in my head. This is going to sound silly, but for a while I’ve thought Simon was a sort of difficult horse to ride. He’s a little hot and sensitive, and requires a lot of feel and delicacy to bring out his best. That’s a true statement, but hard? No. The horse is point and shoot.
Not only is he point and shoot, but he’s kind of a dead head on the ground and under saddle. It takes A LOT to make him spook, and even when he does spook it’s usually a step sideways. He’s a Thoroughbred with the desensitization of a draft cross.
Simon is also the kind of horse that almost anyone can sit on and feel brave. For four years he’s been slowly bolstering up my confidence, and now has made me think that I’m ready for a step-up horse.
But am I ready?
That’s what I’m struggling with today after my first night with mystery horse. Granted, the situation for success couldn’t be worse right now. My farm is getting slammed with rain, and with dry turnout areas already called for there isn’t a lot of safe spaces to let something fresh get the wiggles out on the lunge line. Without going into details, let’s just say that baby mystery horse’s life was very different than the one he would have with me. A drastic change like that has consequences. It was too wet to ride, but hand walking was… challenging. Everything can be explained by logic, but that doesn’t shake the feeling.
Can I really do this, or am I confined to the world of easy to ride dead-head horses? How do you know?