Absolutely no consideration as to who else was also in the arena. I'm just walking some simple patterns - big figure 8s and the like - and hoping to work in a little trotting. Because I still don't know what Gray is like, he's got a bit of red in his tail so no one can complain there was no warning if he does kick.
Now this other rider starts cantering around the arena, so I move off the outside track to give her room. At this point Gray is getting quite worked up because there's another horse moving fast around him. I dismounted and headed towards the gate so I can leave this woman to her cantering. I'm opening the gate just after she goes past, but all of a sudden this woman decides to circle right next to the gate, when she had previously been around the entire 20x40 arena. She was heading down the long side away from me as I was opening the gate.
I'm stuck on the ground trying to open a gate with a 17h Oldenburg tank cantering straight at me (well, figuratively speaking - he's crooked as a dog's hind leg) and a worked up Gray jerking my arm around. Gray spooked and her horse got kicked before he barged the gate open. I took him out to the - empty - canter track and walked a lap to try calm him down before unsaddling.
Luck has it that she's waiting for the vet while I'm untacking. Vet arrives, and she proceeds to whinge and moan about how I got in her way and made my horse kick hers. HARDLY. I would have been out of her hair before she came round, even with her galloping giraffe, if she had continued round the arena. But no, instead of being a little patient or even circling at the other end of the ****ed arena, she had to cause a huge problem.
Gray is still a little freaked, and when she walked her horse past me and Gray to her box, he reared and fell over. Didn't hurt himself, but for once I'm glad he's in a paddock by himself because he seems absolutely terrified of this horse. This other rider even had the balls to tell the vet to send the bill to me. Thankfully he's also my vet so I talked to him about the whole thing when he checked Gray over. Bill is going to her, though I feel like sending her an envelope full of acid instead, and Gray finally settled down after a feed and some valerian root.
So, red ribbon clearly visible in his tail aside, what would you have done? I felt like punching her in the face after this, especially since I don't know what state Gray's going to be in tomorrow. I know I did the right thing at the time - calming Gray - but I still feel guilty as hell that her horse got kicked (isn't major though, just a little scratch on his barrel).
I'm not this rider's friends. I don't even know her beyond saying hello/goodbye if I see her at the yard, so I'm not interested in salvaging any friendship. I'm more interested in salvaging Gray's arena attitude, and I would appreciate any hints on helping him overcome any fear he might develop due to today's episode.