Friday, May 29, 2009


I went out to see The Cowboy last night. He has my young Thoroughbred gelding, Rosso, for some training. Rosso had me pretty buffaloed so I put him in the hands of someone more experienced with the equine brain.... The Cowboy.

The Cowboy took Rosso up to the mountains over the Memorial Day weekend. He said Rosso did great - he climbed up rocks with him, dropped him down a 4-5' straight drop off into a boggy creek that was 15 feet wide and Rosso went through all of it like it was nuthin'.

I went up last night to ride my horse while The Cowboy watched and offered advice.

IT WAS AMAZING! We started off in the arena and The Cowboy showed me how to "knock his ass end out from under him" otherwise known as disengaging the hip I think. The Cowboy has his own unique language however, and that makes me laugh. He's good people.

I was to knock his ass out from under him anytime Rosso was being naughty or getting too fizzy. The Cowboy uses the term "fizzy" when Rosso gets worked up. I like that term - it is mentally so much less intimidating than spooky or hot.

I have a tendency to tense up a little and want to put the brakes on Rosso when he's being "fizzy". Mentally tho', the fizzy terminology helps me because if I think about a bottle of soda that is all shook up and fizzy - if I try to bottle it up - I am only going to have an explosion and mess on my hands. It reminds me to let Rosso move out and go forward - and I did and he was GREAT!

The Cowboy asked if I wanted to go out on a short trail ride... I was sorta nervous but THIS is why I'm here - to learn and do.
Off we went.
Rosso was good... he got a bit fizzy and I knocked his ass out - he went along fine and wasn't quite so fizzy. Another time he got a bit fizzy I moved him forward vs. knocking his ass end out - we did some big trot and canter circles out in the middle of nowhere... he was GREAT! Never out of control, always in my hands and not doing anything scary or bad.
The Cowboy was shouting and taunting me while I did this -- "He's one scary bastard ain't he? You better watch out, he's a big mean horse!"
It helped Rosso to relax when I let him out and work, and when I asked him to stop or walk he was relaxed and happy to do so.

The Cowboy reminded me to relax a few times and I know I need to remember that - but I didn't clutch on or grab or anything - to *ahem* quote The Cowboy "like a monkey fucking a football" - the tenseness was more in my shoulders and low back. On the way home, The Cowboy looked back at me from the horse he was riding and told me he didn't know why I was paying him to ride Rosso. He said I had good hands and a nice seat and there was nothing that I couldn't handle about Rosso. I was beaming!

After my ride, I went up to see my regular trainer, Rexanne. She couldn't take Rosso because she is up to her eyeballs in training horses right now but I wanted to tell her about my ride.
She was happy for me even if she rolled her eyes a little and gave me an "I told you so" because she told me I'd be able to handle Rosso just fine. It's o.k. a boost to my confidence and a bit o' help was needed. I'm glad I took my big, red-headed baby to The Cowboy and I'm glad he's coming home.

I'm gonna pick Rosso up Saturday morning. The Cowboy is going to have one last ride on him down OUR road to my trainer's barn Saturday morning immediately after I bring Rosso home. (It's 2 miles away. ) He's going to show me Rosso is fine on the road and he'll ride him past the llama farm to show me Rosso really IS fine.

I felt a bit like a yeller dog agreeing to have him do that one last thing... but heck. We are paying him and it will give me peace of mind and that leeetle bit of more confidence. He's the one who offered when he saw my hesitation about riding Rosso up the road.

I'm laughing at myself. Gawd. When did I become such a big damn chicken anyway??? BAWK BAWK


Heather said...

"like a monkey effing a football"!!! He did not say that! I'm glad he got your confidence up and I'm glad you are getting your horse back!

Oh, and whatever trail he took Rosso on sounds AWESOME! I love the steep technical stuff!

DebH said...

doesn't sound like a chicken at all, just carefully precautious!! Which is a good thing. I think as I experience my own whoopsies and "crap..I shouldadone that a little different" it's made me be just a little overly fearful too. What the heck...whats the worst that could happen?? Oh..wait now...didn't expect that to happen!! there I go again....

Shanster said...

Heather - oh YES he did say that. I told him I'd never get that image out of my head...of a monkey and a football...

DebH - sure feels chicken! but yes, maybe after seeing your ankle and your lip, it IS just careful precaution! HA!

Cheryl said...

I would too if just hear The Cowboy speak some more! I love it when people make such colorful use of the language. Did you ever ask him what brought him to America?

Shanster said...

Cheryl - I know - he is SO colorful!

He said he'd always worked with horses and had an offer from a big ranch in OK to come ride some horses when he was in Australia.

He agreed and worked horses until he saw they were really not nice to their horses. He quit and went on the rodeo circuit... stopped in CO, liked it here and found a place to set up shop to train horses.

He still winters in Australia and works horses over there too.

Said he went to Hong Kong this winter to visit his brother and was offered a job at a race track but could never live in Hong Kong.

Said he was a jockey in Australia when he was 16 but then "me balls dropped when I turned 21" and I had to stop.

I'm not exactly sure what that means? I'm assuming it means he grew?

Talk about an interesting person with stories to tell huh?

Kelley said...

It's all that time on EggBay!! : )

Shanster said...

I think so! BAAAWWWWK!

Anonymous said...

What a colorful way to train a horse. Your cowboy is too funny. I'm sure you're not a chicken on your horses.

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey Shanster,
Sorry I've not been by much lately ... a bit preoccupied as you know. Anyway, great to hear about the excellent progress with Rosso! And The Cowboy sure does sound like a fun guy to know, especially with those turns of phrase! "Knocking his ass end out from under him," wow, sounds mean but ultimately a good thing!

Looks like the experience will be a good thing for you in the long run, so money well spent, I'd say!

Foxxy said...

Hey chickens are loved the world over. Of course that is because they are super tasty, but still loved the world over.

Shanster said...

IVG - nope, not painful! grin. It's turning him in a tiny circle so he can't get any momentum to run off or buck or be a naughty boy!

Foxxy - awww... ain't you sweet? Thanks for the laugh!