Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Worst ride ever #1

... or, how I became a horse thief
Jennifer over at How Did This Happen claims that catharsis is good for the soul. And in honor of the fact, she shared accounts of her worst three rides.

They are indeed doozies. And she climbed back on every time.

She asked for other's Worst Ride Ever stories - Jennifer, here you go.

I've definitely had a couple "worst" rides. Can more than one be worst? Anyway, I'll save my worst wreck story for another day. But for sheer embarrassment, this one still tops all the others.


I was probably about 12 or so. I'd had Shan for several years, and was pretty comfortable riding on my own with very little adult oversight. On this particular day I was over at a friend's house. She also had a pony. An itty-bitty little thing that was way too small for me, but plenty big for her - I'm over 5'9, she's was only about 5'3" or so, and skinny as a rail.

So we fooled around with Whiskey for a bit, but it's not much fun riding when one person always has to walk.

Now down the road about a mile or two lived an older friend of my mom's. E had a pile of grandkids, but more importantly, she also had a whole herd of horses. I'd ridden most of them lots of times when we were over there.

And what better solution to our lack-of-horse problem then to go see if we could borrow one of hers.

We trekked down there, arriving sweaty (me more so, 'cause I walked the whole, hilly, way) and hopeful, and asked E could I please borrow Mingo for a bit. She okay'd it and I caught him up. But the rest of the herd was really interested in Whiskey - no way were we going to take a strange pony in with a bunch of big horses. Even we weren't THAT stupid.

Of course, we also weren't bright enough to simply lock them up and ride in the pasture. Nope, we just opened the gate, led him out, and trotted off down the road.


Me and Mingo - 1985
We were about a mile down the road chatting and giggling when here came E, dust boiling up behind her car. Seems she's thought we'd ride in the pasture (after locking the horses up). Imagine her surprise when she came out to tell us she was headed for town and it was time to put Mingo up - only to find no kids, no Mingo, and the rest of the horses hanging over the fence looking down the road after us.

E read me - well, both of us, really - the riot act for taking Mingo without telling her.

Let me tell you, we booked it back to the barn as fast as Whiskey's stubby little legs could carry her. I was mortified (
the excursion being my idea, because I just knew E wouldn't mind).

After we put Mingo back we walked slowly and silently back to my friend's place, all three of us on foot - poor little Whiskey was hot & lathery from her scramble after Mingo. The two of us walking who could talk never discussed it afterwards. Ever.

I for one waited for the phone to ring once I got home. And then dreaded it coming up to be laughed about the next time we were over there visiting. But E never said a word to my parents.

Years later I mentioned it to her, and you know, she'd forgotten the whole thing. I guess in comparison to the grey hairs she'd acquired (to this day dyed a brilliant red that both denies her 80+ years and warns of her flash point temper) from 6 kids and scads of grandkids, one misappropriated horse returned with no damage didn't make a lingering impression on her.

It certainly did on me! I get prickly all over ever time I recall that car tearing up that gravel road behind us.


So what's your worst ride ever? Most embarrassing moment? Remember, confession is good for you ;)


Jennifer said...

OOps is right.. How brave you were to be scrambling back home, with no fear the horses would spook back to the barn. :)

SunnySD said...

LOL - I don't think bravery entered into it! At that point, I was a lot more afraid of what Mingo's owner would do to me than landing in the ditch!