I had a cob by 14.2 pony, Try, he had a wicked sense of humour and would assess a rider before they got within yards of him.
We were having work done on the stables and Jonah, a bricklayer and motorbike fanatic was keen to have a go at riding.
First off when I said he could have a go, he drove up the road to the pub. When he returned he said that he didn't think that riding a horse would be much different to riding a motorbike.
He got on. He then pulled out a packet of Malborough cigarettes and said he wanted to look the part! (Older ones will remember the Malborough adverts with the cowboy!)
Try was ambling around the arena.
"Well. First gear isn't so bad - can I try second?"
At this point one of my young liveries arrived, she had been on holiday and had brought me a present back which was a lollipop the size of a dinner plate. Nothing but pure sugar and not to my taste at all but she was insistent I had some of it.
So, there I was with a young girl by my side whilst I was licking a lolly and telling Try to terrrrroooottt.
Try started to trot and Jonah was bumping around on his back.
"Well, this is a bit bumpy, can we go into third?"
Try cantered to my voice command and was cantering around the arena. Jonah was bouncing a bit, nothing terrible and all in all his balance wasn't to bad.
Try had been around a couple of times and was looking at me and I knew what he was thinking, he knew I knew what he was thinking. Jonah wanted to slow down and called out "Whoa, whoa horse."
As I hadn't corrected Try when he gave me his eye he obeyed and whoaed in half a stride. Jonah went straight over his head and was sat on the ground - his cigarette was still in his mouth but broken in half.
"Well," he remarked, "there isn't a motorbike that can stop that quick!"
Try was stood stock still by his side not al all perturbed that he had dropped his rider after all, hadn't he just whoaed to command?
I walked over to help Jonah up, of course I was shaking with laughter! I took Try's reins in the hand that was holding the lollipop and put the other out to pull Jonah to his feet, Try just reached around and took the lollipop eating it all including the stick.
I gave him extra feed that night!
I will say that pony was one of the best with Riding for the Disabled, never putting a foot wrong or taking advantage.
He just knew his job.