Today brought some ups and downs and interesting quirks. It started out great. Crossbo’s mystery lameness disappeared yesterday and he was feeling sassy today. I decided to play it safe and give him some more time off, but that was no problem because Arthur was also feeling in his prime. With a 2:00 PM hunt, I had lots of time to relax and prepare without rushing. I should have known Murphy’s law would have to kick in sometime.
The first fly in the ointment appeared when I arrived at the meet, in plenty of time, and started tacking up. I put the saddle on Arthur’s back, looked at, and said “Aww SHIT!”
Last week, I decided it was about time for a new pair of stirrup leathers. Since I wasn’t sure what size I needed, I took one off the saddle to measure. That turned out to be a totally unnecessary step, because when I walked into Wise Choice and told Dave I needed stirrup leathers, he said “You need 54s, let’s see what I got”. He turned out to have a very nice pair of 54s. (What kind of image does that conjure up?)
I decided not to bother putting the new leathers on today, because the old ones still had some life in them. That was kind of stupid, because I had plenty of time, and putting the new ones on wouldn’t have been much more trouble than replacing the old one I took off to measure.
I’m sure you can see where this is going. Replaclng the old leather would have been almost trouble as putting the new ones on, IF I had done it. But unfortunately, I did neither, and there I was, looking at a saddle with one stirrup.
Fortunately, the day was saved by a well-prepared member of the Bitch Pack who rummaged through the warehouse of equipment in her trailer and provided me with a spare. So I was saved from the unpleasant choice of either riding lopsided all afternoon (which might not be unusual for me), or giving up and returning home.
Things went fairly smoothly for the first hour or so after that, but Murphy wasn’t done yet. As we cantered through some trees, a rider ahead of me went down after testing his helmet’s blunt force impact resistance on one of the trees.
The next hour or so was spent in a minor clusterfuck of locating vehicles and first-aid equipment. Our extremely reliable medical officer (a former ER nurse) who came to the rescue of the fallen rider was also the one who had lent me a stirrup. It would have been pretty damn unchivalrous to ride away, on her stirrup, leaving her to tend to the victim. So I hung around to render whatever assistance I could.
We finally got him strapped to a backboard and hauled him to a road, where we transferred him to the capable hands of Lexington’s Fire/EMS department. Now I just have to figure out how to explain to my family that I helped save a Republican’s life, and not just any Republican, but one who hosts fund-raising lunches with Karl Rove.
After getting him shipped off to a hospital, and ponying his horse back to the trailer, there was just one chore left. His car needed to be driven to his farm. Actually, this wasn’t a particularly unpleasant chore, because his farm was not far away, and like his hero, Karl Rove, he drives a Jaguar. At least Republicans can afford nice cars. What do you think? Would anybody mistake me for
Karl? Should I use that picture on one of those online dating sites?