Pouring outside and everyone was in; Violet was wandering the aisles, taking bites from everyone’s hay nets, lording over her kingdom. I was filling hay nets when she decided to squeeze into the stall that is packed with hay bales, and stood was munching contentedly. I decided this was a great opportunity for Vi to have some bareback time, and used the hay bales to climb up on her back (she’s way too large for me to get up there otherwise!~). She’s good about this.
So there we were, squished in the stall, no tack, Violet chomping away while I scratched her withers and enjoyed being up there. Phantom was in the next stall and found this amusing. Now here’s the part where I demonstrate that I’ve learned a small thing or two. It occurred to me, as I was playing with her mane, that I should think thru how this might end; I mean, the stall door behind us was open, and there was no way I could control her if she decided to leave. I thought about this, while the storm blew outside, and thought about the concrete aisle (slippery) and the open door to the icy yard (way more slippery) and the huge field that she could run in, and decided that my best course of action would be to eject sooner rather then later. I looked at how she was positioned in the tiny space and could easily see which way she would pivot in order to leave, and as I laid my head down again on her neck, I envisioned myself as one of those amazing nimble riders who could jump lightly off their steed. One of those circus performers or talented cowboys. I am many things but ‘amazingly nimble’ isn’t generally a description I use.
As I daydreamed across Vi’s back, listening to the wind and rain, there was a thud. It was not huge but Vi’s head shot up anyway, and mine did as well, and in the same second, I felt her shoulder tighten and pivot. My ‘nimble self’ had already pictured this this happening, and already role-played my reaction, and I pushed off her withers as my leg swung up and around, and then POOF, the horse was gone and I was by myself in the stall. Violet was already mid-aisle. Then she stopped, head up and turned slightly, and looked back; I swear she said “where’d you go?”, looking back towards me, and I smiled. I had landed safely on my feet.