Monday, August 27, 2007

A story for another day #3: The Devil Mare

Every summer I go to camp. This isn’t any camp; it’s a horse camp (surprise, surprise). Horse Camp is one of the highlights of my years. I absolutely love it! The people are amazing, and we always have tons of fun! In fact Camp is where I met Sarah-Anne; the camp is on her parent’s farm and all the horses we ride are owned by them. The camps are run by Scripture Union
and anyone can come. (The link takes you right to the Horse Camp page). Exciting things happen every year at camp and we always have the best of times.

This past summer I went to two camps Senior Girls aka Farmyard Fillies (they recently gave them these silly names) and Senior Co-Ed aka Hard Core. This story takes place at the first camp Farmyard Fillies ‘snigger’. At this camp I mainly hang with one group of friends (people come back year after year) Lizzy, Kimmy and Sarah-Anne. Lizzy, Kimmy and I came down a couple of days early just so we could hang with Sarah-Anne since we only get together once a year at this camp. We also wanted to get some extra riding in. So out we go for a first ride of the summer. It wasn’t just us four, Grace (the co-director of this camp) and her sister Christina were down helping break in horses at the farm so they came with us too. Now I can confidently say that we all love McLeods Daughters and on this ride we were joking about how we could totally be the McLeods Daughters characters. We decided to ride bareback just to make it authentic (even though the characters of McLeods Daughters ride with stock saddles).

I was on this little pony called Tosca aka The Devil Mare. Apparently Tosca had a problem with bolting which was why she was no longer with her previous owner (I’m not sure if I was told this before I got on), she also had a jump which was absolutely fantastic. Now off we go on this ride. We rode along one of the familiar trails when we came to a gate, while one of the others was opening the gate, Tosca decided to go AWOL and she went for a little gallop up a hill. We soon sorted this out and we rejoined the others. About 5 mins after this incident we reached a small ditch. We jumped it and kept on going (the ditch has significance a little bit later on). We rode about another 5 minutes when I decided it was time to take a photo of the group. My camera was hanging around my neck so I got the others to stop and turn around. I had one hand on the reins and with the other I picked up my camera and took the lens cap off. As soon as the lens cap tapped against the camera I felt Tosca tense. I took the picture but it was blurry, so I held the camera back up to take another. The lens tapped again… twice. Tosca tensed again, and then did a little dance on the spot. I managed to take one more picture and then WOOSH! We were off. She had to get rid of this tapping monster on her back. She galloped straight for a small but very vertical hill. I wasn’t worried, I just knew she would stop when she realized she couldn’t get to the top of the hill. So I just tried pulling her to stop with one hand and kept hold of my camera with the other, not really worrying at all. But oh boy I was wrong. As soon as she realized she couldn’t get to the top she spun and started heading back the way we came. She was at a full gallop down the trail, I felt so secure with her small, quick stride that I still wasn’t worried. I just kept hold of my camera so it wouldn’t set her off again.
Then I saw the ditch, now up until then I hadn’t done much bareback riding. And I defiantly hadn’t done any bareback jumping. Seeing the ditch I realized there could be the possibility of me falling off this quick little minx. And I had to make a hard decision… when I fell did I want to protect my head or my camera (I wasn’t wearing a helmet! And yes I agree, my pony club instructors would be all aghast). You think the obvious decision would be to save my head and sacrifice my camera but at the time I was quite afraid of any wrath of my mum if I broke the camera. But before I could make this decision the ditch was upon us! She took off with a mighty leap and somehow I managed to stay on her (WAHOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! Go me! I was so proud of myself). And then suddenly she did one of those evil pony spins and BAM I was on the ground. Thankfully I didn’t fall on my head OR my camera… I fell on my butt. It hurt but there was no permanent damage (lol). The others soon arrived and I got back on and continued on the ride.

No more happened that day, but I never like her after that. I was put on her on another ride later in the summer and I was so worried about her taking off it was making her nervous (yes I know, if I had been relaxed I would’ve been fine) but it was all good because I got to ride Shelby who is my second favorite horse in the world and I cannot wait for her foal that better arrive soon! And that is the story about Tosca… she now has been bought by one of the campers and thankfully I will never have to ride her again.

PS. I just want to apologize for the two long posts I wrote today… I couldn’t help it.


Pic 1 is of Lizzy, Kimmy, Me and Sarah-Anne. Look at us! It looks like we are having fun doesn't it. We even have warrior soot on our face!

Pic 2 is one of the pictures from that ride. I'm in the back in yellow. Obviously this isn't one of the pictures I took on my little adventure. But that little biddy I am riding on is Tosca.

Pic 3 is Kimmy on Kimmy (actually the horses name is Lady Kim, but it is named after her) and Shelby. Thats right, the big hunk of gorgeous horse flesh is Shelby. Isn't she just awesome! I love her to bits! And Kimmy is just the cutest appy ever!


learninghorses said...

Good for you and your riding skills to brave the bareback, but without a helmet? Shame, shame, shame. Next time please? :)

Pony Tail Club said...

Wow, good for you! my mom once was bareback on a horse who unexpectedly jumped a big ditch and she wound up with a broken arm. I'm happy you are sfe!