Runaway, Runaway, WHOA!!
Mini – Series – Episode 2: We’re Only ‘Making Plans For Nigel!’
I experienced a throbbing headache all week following my first ever ‘proper’ horse riding lesson and my head butting of the stable roof, and by around Friday of the new week, admittedly l wasn’t as keen to continue with my lessons, loving couple’s or not. I had a week to consider if maybe it had just been clumsy bad luck or was it perhaps some kind of dark foreboding omen? Warning me that horse riding and l may never get along?
The other half had found the whole incident highly amusing and praised herself to the highest heavens that of course ‘she knew what to do in the saddle, whereas her husband was simply a blundering oaf!” to not just her immediate family, but her friends and everyone at work, and for that matter even our neighbours learned of my ‘adventures!’ However the course or block had been paid for so we should see it through was her argument, and l agreed, there was of course that logic. we had paid for them, we may as well utilise the benefits …… although l was struggling to understand what they might be.
The next day we found ourselves once more setting off for the stables just outside Peterborough, and we had arrived there within the hour ready for ’round 2′. During the course of the week, the other half had gone out and bought herself boots, jacket, helmet, jodhpurs the works, so that she would look ‘professional’ and knowledgeable at an astonishing cost of almost £600? When l asked why she could not have simply bought second hand, in case she decided she didn’t wish to be a ‘professional rider’, it was simply answered with ‘You have to look the part Rory, become one with the horse!’
“Oh right, and the horse knows second hand from brand new does it?” I am not a tight fist, but we couldn’t afford that especially with the likes of three cats and eight dogs, and all the other expenditures on top of running a house. As it was we got the block of riding lessons on the cheap through a magazine, otherwise that would have cost us nearly £300 alone instead of the £60!
But she could be like that, she couldn’t stand second-hand anything, it had to be spanking new irrespective of whether it was in the budget or not. It was always about image with her, always, you had to look like you were part of the establishment. I had spent years conforming to that type of shit, and was no longer in that mentality.
So she turned up looking like she was veteran whilst l simply turned up in cargoes and a tee shirt and a jumper. There was kit at the stables l could use if needs be was my philosophy and l really didn’t wish to spend out any valuable finances IF l wasn’t going to continue with the riding.
We were told to go down to the stables where last week’s instructors were mucking out and readying the horses. They saw me and smiled and asked how l was, and if l was ready to become an inspiration? Which l just found an odd thing to say, but ignored it, when the ex added “No more drama queen episodes today eh?” To which point everyone laughed ………, you are right to think l didn’t, but l smiled whilst l silently cursed them all!
It was then when the instructor told the ex that she would have the same horse as last week and turning to me and said “We’re only making plans for Nigel for you’, that l burst out into laughter and said “You’re joking right? That’s a song by XTC!”
I should point out that at that time l was 40 whilst the ex was only 28, and the instructors were much younger than that and everyone just looked blankly at me and like l had five heads and was bright yellow with green spots! “Oh just ignore him!” The ex exclaimed he has a very bizarre humour, “l ignore him all the time!” They they all laughed again!
“Nigel is the horse you shall be riding today and he is a lovely gentleman with a very soft nature, you might learn a thing or two from him!” The haughty one of the two quipped.
I was trying to suss out if she was being a bit of a cheeky mare herself as that was quite a quick and richly funny comment, but looking deeply into her eyes l could see that the humour was quite beyond her limits and configured that it was pure sarcasm!
In truth, the lesson wasn’t that bad, because Nigel was an excellent teacher, he was patient and understanding and was very tolerant of any small mistakes l could make, apart from accidentally stepping on my foot because he was what they called a table top horse as in quite heavy and flat on top and could be a little ungainly when no one was sitting on top of him, he made no mistakes at all and he renewed my faith in riding, and when we left later that afternoon, l was looking forwards to my next riding lesson the following Saturday. What l didn’t know then, was that Nigel wouldn’t be available, but Barnaby would be!
Then the problems really began, hard and fast and deadly serious!
Thanks for reading, another episode soon.