Long Ride

Kip and I went out today for our first, long, really grown-up ride with a bunch of other people from the stable. It’s interesting what a baby will find scary, and what they won’t:

1. Crossing a main, VERY busy road in town, four lanes of heavy traffic: not scary.
2. Crossing over painted lines on the road: scary.
3. Motorcycle: not scary.
4. Large, noisy lorry: ditto.
5. Cows making noise up on the top of a hill on a farm, which was so distant we could barely even see it: VERY scary, to the point of him turning into a horsey statue. I had to get off and hand-walk him until we were out of range. And this is a horse that was living in a calf barn when I bought him, since he was a stallion and couldn’t be stabled with the other horses. Go figure.
6. Two narrow hump-backed bridges: not scary.
7. Large dog barking and snarling behind a gate: very scary.
8. Tiny dog running out into the road and barking at the horses’ heels: not scary.
9: Industrial car vacuums, a man cutting or grinding metal in a workshop: not scary.
10. Man dragging a garden hose out of his garage: VERY scary.

We survived, though, and Kip seemed quite proud of himself when he got back. Someone else commented on how he was strutting along, very impressed with himself, as though he knew he had really done something. :) Kip is such a butthead sometimes (ok, most of the time), but he really is my baby boy.

8 thoughts on “Long Ride”

  1. Woo! congrats :) that ride sounds like a huge accomplishment.

    And horses ARE so peculiar about what is and is not scary. Even worse, my two spook at *different* things, so when I’m waiting for Denali to spook at the cows (which Ally hates), she’s busy spooking at the farm machinery that Ally ignores. *slaps forehead*

    I remember trying to get Denali to walk OVER a white line on the road the first time out. Took us 5 minutes of kicking and thwapping with my hand (no crop, opps) to make her move forward. Horses are very peculiar about how they perceive their world! Yet the airplane that flew overhead and landed 500 yards away? She didn’t even blink. HELLO? Large object falling out of sky and landing on ground? I expected to die and she didn’t even notice.

  2. Hahaha…a plane landing? I would have SO bailed off immediately, expecting to be bolted with. :) I’ve never understood why horses are so weird about the lines on the road: it wouldn’t look like a ditch or a hole, it’s obviously not an obstruction…perhaps it looks like something that could move suddenly, sort of like plastic bags? I don’t know.

  3. small plane! but still, I would think that the physics of it would freak them out. I insanely enough took photos – this was her first trail ride ever and apparently I thought that (in the rain too) juggling a camera would be wise. heh.


    I think the white lines are contrast issues… when they sprayed ‘no parking’ on some logs at the barn, Ally REALLY freaked out when walking by them for the first time. I was laughing too hard. No point being upset!

  4. It was great! I do miss trails, tho. Even in the heart of Los Angeles I had Griffith Park, and the areas along the wash to ride on. Here land is at a premium, and seems to be carefully guarded. :(

  5. I’ve only ever experienced the selectiveness of what a horse deems scary once. To get from the stables to the parkland involved negotiating a very busy road and a roundabout, all of the horses were used to it and it was never a big deal. However this one time I was riding Soldier who was supposedly very calm in traffic, which usually he was, except this one time when a truck carrying scrapped cars passed by, he got a bit skittish and certainly gave me an interesting few moments as it was only a couple of weeks before that I stopped having to use a lead rein. It’s good to hear things are going well with Kip, and as for the man with the hose pipe I did read somewhere a long time ago that some horses look at a hose pipe and think it is a snake, so maybe that was what Kip was thinking.

  6. I think he probably did think that it was a snake. They seem to track things by movement or sound, and so are frightened by plastic blowing around, things rustling in the bushes, etc., so he probably thought it was something coming after him. :) I love your icon, btw.

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