My daughter has been feeling bad that I never ride. It just seems like such a pain in the rear trying to catch Gibby (you have to get him in the stall and sneak behind him and shut the gate to the pasture.) The other day, she went out there and did it, though.
I admit he's been a lawn ornament most of this semester and getting on a spooky lawn ornament is not something undertaken lightly, plus I am committed to exercising 5-6 days a week, but I decided to honor her thought and take the boy for a walk. Literally, like a dog, for a walk.
Along the way, I let him stop and sample the grass. And I acted like an absolute fool - dancing around, running toward him, waving my arms. I can only imagine what people driving by thought. This horse is dangerously spooky, so the point was to make him completely inured to my antics. He's selectively spooky. You can sack him out with a whip, a plastic bag on a stick, any cloth, no matter how flappy and loudly colored - but raise your hand and he's out of there.
The first time I made an abrupt movement, he wheeled around and attempted to bolt - a good hold on the lead rope stopped him. I looked at him with absolute lazy body posture and said, "What's the deal, guy, go eat!" He stood there snorting at me, and then put his head down and ate. I did it again and again. For a good ten minutes, he stood and stared at me with one big round eye, but his head was down and he wasn't breathing hard - it was more like, "You are one crazy mama, you know?"
He started grazing with intensity and didn't even flinch eventually. Success!
Next step is mounting and dismounting and mounting, over and over.
I noticed when I came home yesterday, he was standing at the gate. I think he wanted to play some more. I am looking forward to summer and some horseplay.