Here again is some wisdom from the Tennessee Valley Hunt’s Most Awesome Hunt Horse EVER: All riders new tofoxhunting need to practice their skills at home before they come out to the meet. No matter how old or young, lessons should be taken to reduce risk while riding cross-country. Now that is not to say that I would ever endanger my riders, cough the Wench excluded cough, cough, but sometimes out in the country I am required to perform feats of amazing athletic ability. If the rider is not ready to follow my lead, then there might be an unintentional cropper. [Gretchen’s Note: Amazing Athletic Ability? With your hippo butt? How can you even get you hooves off the ground with that Buddha-Belly?]
Ahem! If I may continue without such inane chattering…
So my girls who take lessons with me are also hunting for the first time this season. We have done the customary cross-country riding lessons of cantering downhill, galloping uphill, jumping in a group, popping logs from a standstill and taking small coops in fence lines. This is all great! Imagine, That Woman does sometimes have intelligent thoughts in her head.
But this last lesson I was not happy. It seems that Gretchen, aka the Scarlet Wench, thinks that it is dignified for me to be used as a vaulting pony. She laughs and laughs as the kids try to hop on me from terrible positions. I’ll tolerate the belly flops onto my saddle and the leg swinging up from standing at my neck, but the other stuff? Come on! The elephant warmbloods don’t have to put up with this indignity! [Gretchen’s Note: Poor widdle Ziggykins. You stand there so patiently as the kids have a ball trying to jump on you. They love you even more because you put up with it. You are the only pony on the farm that is short enough to even think about trying it. And squishy enough to make it comfortable.] I really dislike That Woman. Except when she brings me my oat berry scones and mint tea in the mornings. Then she is okay, but every other time she’s horrible. [Gretchen’s Note: You wuv me, little Ziggy-Poo, you know you do.]
This last lesson the girls took turns getting a running start to jump over my tail and hop up onto my rump into the saddle. Yes, you read that correctly. They are trying to leap frog me. I ask you, do I look like a frog? Am I green? Do I croak? No. But I stand there without moving a hoof or twitching my tail as they use me as a bouncy ball. I am not amused.
Then the girls started to run alongside me holding onto my saddle as the Wench popped my rump with a crop to get me trotting. The girls would then jump and the momentum of my trotting would pull them into the saddle. I am so embarrassed. How can a Huntsman’s Hunt Horse of the grandest scale as I am be expected to put up with such larking? [Gretchen’s Note: I did not ever “pop” you with a crop. I waved it behind you and never touched you with it. You are such a pansy.] Next thing you know Gretchen will have them jump off a roof top onto me. I am a HUNT HORSE not a trick pony in an old Spaghetti Western. I want to go hunting and get some dignity back. Anyone out there want to hire me out to get me away from this awful woman? Sigh…..
Ziggy Pelham, a Very Dignified And Dapper Hunt Horse Extraordinaire
[Gretchen’s Note: See the video of the leap frogging in question on his Facebook page, Ziggy Pelham. He was so cute!] I will dump you in the river, you horrible female. River – you – drowned. Just wait.