My parents have had some health issues in the last 10 years and their riding time has been steadily declining, haven't even rode in the last 2 years at all. Dad also was dumped about 4 years ago and lost some confidence in himself and his horse. Add to that mom is pretty much done riding herself and so everytime I called to invite them out there was an excuse not to go. Started to become evident to me that dad still wanted to ride but mom was done (both retired now).
Well, mom took off for a week to attend a family reunion back east. I sprang into action and invited dad out for a ride behind moms back (she was inside the house packing) and he was all for it. Swung by yesterday to pick him up. Soon as he climbed on his horse he put on a huge smile. 3 hours riding later and that smile was still on his face. Matter of fact, another 3 hours later when we left his house that smile still hadn't been wiped off his face. He's regained confidence in himself and his horse that they can still be a team together. Now I'm hoping he wont keep letting mom run interference to his riding!
Have to say that was actually one of my best riding days of my life.