So I have moved my two horses to a new "boarding" place. I say "boarding" in quotations because it's not really a boarding barn; the lady just likes having people around to ride with on her 160+ acres she has.
Really, really nice lady. And a decent place at that too. But I have found it interesting that she relies on her teenage boys and her husband to do everything around the place including fix fence and dig the outdoor arena. I guess as long as it gets done, I don't care, but I just feel like when I have my own place someday, you can bet your dollar I"m going to be out there doing it, and not my non-horsey husband.
Anyway, but the part that makes me feel like "the smartest person in the room" is compared to the other boarders. Now, I am not a know-it-all in any way, shape, or form. I can name TONS of people who know much more about horses than I do. But .......
One guy (we'll call him "Bob") boards his horses just in the summer. He rides "heels up" in tennis shoes. He sits lopsided to the right on his horse. He has the single most worst fitting saddle I've ever seen (when he is not sitting on the horse, the back of the saddle is raised a good 6 inches in the air off the horse). Both his horses have foundered but yet they aren't on any special diet or getting any special care (just on GREEN pasture 24/7). He rides in a mechanical hackamore (not itself a bad thing) but with the halter underneath that is interferring with the action of the hackamore.
I've not said a word to him about his riding habits, and I am not going to because it is not my place.
Then another lady that boards there (we'll call her "Jill"). She has two horses. One bucked her off last summer and broke 9 of her ribs. So she is understandably a very NON-confident rider. The horse that bucked her off has horrible ground manners. Bob tries to help Jill with her horses. Bob can't even get the horse to back up and get out of his space. Hops on the horse's back last night. We're all sitting around chatting, a couple of us drinking a beer, and I've finally got to say something after witnessing all this different stuff for the past 2 weeks.
So I said what I would do if I had a horse that wouldn't back up on the ground. Then the owner of the whole place (let's call her "Mary") said "Yea, and last time I had to load him, he would not load and he ended up cutting open his chest because we had such a struggle." I'm thinking no wonder; this horse has no sense of respect or ground manners.
So Bob hops on the horse. And he starts asking me how leg aids work, because the horse was supposedly trained for them. Which I explained. Bob is continuing to just putz with the horse nearby on the lawn and then he asks me how to keep the horse from backing up when he applies leg pressure to ask him to go forward? I could clearly see this whole time he's just hanging on the reins, and this horse is getting frustrated. So I told him, some horses are trained that when you apply rein pressure and leg pressure, they will back up. So you need to let go of his mouth if you want him to go forward. Later Bob commented on how he was on the horse's mouth, so I guess he at least understood that.
Then Bob hops onto Jill's other horse that is "too much horse" for her. She's had him for 6 months and has ridden him 3 times. The horse has ONE shoe on its back foot. Both her horses are in need of a trim. The farrier is coming today. When Mary asks if Jill wants her horses trimmed she says no, they were just done last time so they are okay yet. (I can see they are not.)
Anyway, so Bob is on Jill's other horse now. They put a Tom Thumb in his mouth. The horse's nose is in the air the whole time, with his mouth gaping. He even almost put Bob into the dirt because Bob is hanging on his mouth like he was on the other horse. I asked Jill if she always rides this horse in that bit? She said yes, but then asked if she should be using something else. I told her that the TT is a piece of garbage and should be thrown away. And told her why. She then wanted to switch the bit, but Bob just kept riding him. (Remember, Bob is wearing tennis shoes like he always does). Then Jill got on her other horse (That Bob just rode) in her shorts and FatBaby (non-riding boots).
Okay, and I'm just going to stop story telling at this point.
I'm no Stacy Westfall .... not even the slightest bit close ...... but I kinda feel like it at this place. Really nice people and I do like it here, but wow, I guess I've never hung out with such a NON-horse savvy bunch. Kinda feel sorry for those horses in particular.