I'm on a roll! I'm not sure if I even have the ability to write for cereal boxes, but I'm having fun with Redneck Dressage. Check out Party Trois - Trail Riding:)

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Redneck Dressage - Part Deux

Redneck Dressage Part Trois - Trail Riding

Trail riding should be relaxing… just you, the trail, a few good friends and your beloved horses. Keep in mind, I said ‘should’ be. In the groups I normally trail ride with, I tend to be the only English rider. They already think you’re weird because you ride a saddle without a horn and let’s face it, the pants aren’t exactly fashionable. Plus, growing up riding English, I can’t IMAGINE riding without a helmet. It’s like driving without a seat belt or better yet, without a seat belt in a car without doors. It just isn’t done. Doesn’t anybody remember Christopher Reeve? So here you are, in the middle of a bunch of Western riders, in fancy riding tights, a postage stamp of a saddle, half chaps and a helmet, while they relax in Levi’s and a baseball cap. GREAT! We’re off to a good start.

Then everyone has to wait while I tack up my horse. I wouldn’t dream of trailering a horse tacked up. Don’t you know they could panic and the tack could get hung, causing a huge disaster? If that’s not enough, you have to haul out the mounting block while they stare at you blankly and then ask someone to park their horse in front of yours while you get on. See, my horses are used to arenas and big, wide open spaces can get you in trouble fast… Especially on a fresh, fit horse!

Off we go! Keep in mind, dressage riders would wrap their horses in bubble wrap if they could. It’s ALL about the horse. What’s that I see? A piece of glass? Suddenly, every muscle in your body tenses as you realize one stray piece of glass lodged in your horse’s hoof could mean the end of your show season. And we wonder why Western riders think we’re frosty, over cautious divas! I won’t even get started on gravel and the possibility of stone bruises.

Ok, you finally get over worrying about the footing and then here come the four wheelers. Finally! Something my horse is cool with. After all, they’re merely a hay delivery device. Yum! Then you feel the disappointment in your horse as the four wheelers disappear down the trail they are not supposed to be on. There wasn’t a blade of grass or hay on them… just a bunch of clanking beer cans. My horses are familiar with those, too… but we won’t talk about that. Keep in mind, the firing range is still going non-stop somewhere behind you. Thank GOD I live in Haughton and that doesn’t bother my horse either.

After a pleasant time on the trails, after you finally start to relax, you come upon an open field, resplendent with knee high grass and colorful flowers. That’s when your cowboy buddy decides he wants to see how fast Trigger can go… without any warning to the rest of the group. OH SH!T! You want to scream, ‘I’m on an OTTB back here!’ Feel free to insert a few other choice expletives as well, but the truth of the matter is, your insides just turned liquid and you’ve got your hands full as your horse finally piaffes. Miraculously, their horse doesn’t find a hidden hole and break a leg as they gallop hell bent for leather through said resplendent field of grass that suddenly turned from a thing of beauty into a park-sized battle field with untold and unseen pitfalls a plenty. They come back heaving and happy as you contend with a seriously pissed off horse. JERK! But you have to be nice, they have the saddle bag (because they have the horn) and the water and frankly, you don’t know your way back.

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