"I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself than be crowded on a velvet cushion"
The Midwest Horse Fair is held every spring and it is worth going to at least once if you are in the area. Horse events, shopping, a farrier competition that our farrier was participating in and a big trailer sales lot which is what we went for. The hubs had secretly done a bunch of research and knew exactly what would fit us. We had a Dodge Nitro (SUV built on the Dakota truck base with a 5,000 lb towing capacity) to pull with so we needed something light, 2 horse and he wanted something tall to avoid any cramping. We found it in the Eclipse brand and left with a 2 horse straight load with a ramp. It was perfect!
The world was now our oyster...or something like that. We had a great summer on the trails. I would hook it all up and get Gem and Pete ready so that when the hubby got home from work he could change and off to the trails we went before the sun went down. I didn't have a GPS at the time, but we put a lot of miles on those horses that summer.
How was her royal highness? As long as she wasn't in the lead she did ok. We did the same trails often so she became really comfortable up there and knew her job. I eventually ditched the western for my Wintec AP English saddle as well and while I was more comfortable I was also less secure. I don't really recall falling that much though. Actually, nothing all that exciting from that summer comes to mind, so it must have been rather dull in reality.
Eventually winter came and the horse trails all closed. I was back in the arena again and had one specific goal: get Gem cantering. Everytime I would ask her with my outside leg to canter she would cow kick and trot at a ridiculous speed. It got to the point where she would kick the walls and I worried she would hurt herself. I got so frustrated one day that I did the unthinkable: I put the hubs on her. Gem hates the hubs. I don't know why, but put him on her and she gets real angry, real quick. She runs, she tries to buck but is so horrible at it it is funny, runs some more, takes sharp corners and generally has a fit. Why did I do it? He is braver than I am and will put up with it all and ride her out whereas I won't or at least didn't at the time. In the end he did get her to canter, but she fell in the corner and hurt her front inside leg, so that ended that.
That bought her some time off and a massage..poor thing. I was a little nervous about the massage since Gem didn't like a whole lot of touching, but she got into it. I signed Pete up as well because you have to be fair and he fell asleep during his!
They are so mistreated, I know :)