Sunday, May 6, 2007

Rachel and Grandma and an Arabian Horse

Daffodil Arabian Spring Horse Show - The Fall

Part 1 of Rachel and Grandma and an Arabian horse

The final words from the last post read: Dandy was on the third beat of the canter to the right (which means all of his weight was coming down on the right front leg) when disaster struck.

The foot came down on a large rock just below the surface and the horse's leg shot out from under him like the horse had stepped on a roller skate. With all of the horse's and rider's weight placed on that one foot at the canter, the impulsion behind the fall was heart stopping. I heard gasps from the onlookers as I was thrown backwards but managed to stay in the saddle. At first I thought the horse was going to go over on top of me, but Dandy struggled to regain his balance. Each desperate footfall seemed to take us in a different direction but the horse just could not get his feet back under him. He did correct himself enough to not fall on top of me. With about the sixth step, the horse stepped on himself and that was the final straw, down he went in a heap partially on his left side sending me flying off to the left.

As I launched off to the side, I took the reins with me. I had been trying to support the horse with them in the fall but now the force of the horse's final collapse jerked the reins from my hands about the same time as my knees hit the ground. The loss of the rein support threw me onto my face into the dirt. The horse stayed down until he was sure that I was totally clear of him.I heard the Arabian gelding get up and I forced myself to my feet to catch him.

People were running from every direction. Someone grabbed me and someone grabbed Dandy. I heard Melody Lee from Jeff Lee & Company tell them to get the horse moving. After a fall like that the worst thing possible was for the horse to stand still.
I also heard people talking about the incredible effort my horse had made to save me. There wasn't a person there who wasn't convinced I'd been spared from a dangerous fall by my horse. The horse had fought the fall every step of the way even though it was painful to do so because he didn't want to land on top of me. If the horse had allowed himself to go over, he would have rolled on top of me and probably broken my pelvis if not much, much worse.

Dandy had a bewildered look in his eye but there were no visible signs of harm on the surface we both appeared to be ok. Even though I expected to see scrapes on his knees, there wasn't a mark. Both of us were covered in dirt. Latter I found a swelling on his face where the horse clipped himself with a front foot.

After assuring everyone that I was ok (as ok as a woman my age can be after being thrown that vilolently into the dirt), they began brushing me and the horse off. Dandy had dirt halfway up his left side, under his belly and on his legs. I had dirt all down the front of me. I even had dirt on the top of my helmet and inside the lenses on my glasses. It's a wonder I didn't have dirt in my eyes but I did get a mouthful and a skinned chin.

They couldn't get the dirt off me fast enough. I wanted to get back on the horse and see if he was moving ok. I remember Jeff Lee brushing off the seat of my pants as I was trying to get to my horse and the little chuckle he gave as he said "I always wanted an excuse to pat your a_ _." Some might think it strange, but if you knew Jeff Lee, you'd know what a prankster he is. It definitely lightened the scary situation and for that I am grateful. Later when I remembered the comment I thought it was a shame a 60 year old woman had to get thrown from a horse to get a compliment.

I did climb back aboard and trotted the horse asking Jeff and Mel Lee if he looked ok to them. He actually felt pretty good to me and they confirmed that he was moving square. So we headed for the ingate. I had already sent Rachel ahead to tell them to hold the gate, I was on my way. Horse people, you never can tell about us.....

To be continued....

After the Fall


  1. I'm glad you are both ok! What an amazing horse to look out for you like that. If we treat the animals well, they'll treat us well, eh?

    I was watching a show about Barbaro that was running in conjunction with the Derby this weekend. I was one of the ones who attentively followed his progress after his accident, and I wondered if the way race horses are bred with those skinny little legs contributes to those types of injuries/difficulty in healing?

  2. Amazing Mikael. So glad you were okay.

  3. Amazing horse you have there. I am glad he took care of you the best he could.

  4. Wow, that is so neat about how hard he worked to protect you. Stories like that are why I love horses - it is so inspiring to see the kind of relationship a person can have with a horse, and how generous horses are!

  5. I am so glad you were okay but I know that the worst was probably two days later when the stiffness moved in. I am so scared that I am going to get hurt because who will look after my horses!!! I plan to enjoy my horses more this year. So great that he was looking out for you, that is a true "friend" and only comes from a loving secure relationship.