We went horse riding again today.
Sister B organised riding for us as a family because I won’t be able to ride again for a while after my surgery at the end of September.
…all the saddles lined up and waiting for when we arrived…
We started our ride at close to 1pm, and we were a group of about 15 which makes for some considerable planning on ours as well as the farm’s part. We were quite a diverse group as well, a couple of little girls who’d never ridden before, a few beginners who have never ridden alone, a few who ride occasionally as well as a couple of old “pros”. The weather was incredible! It was warm, cloudy, not hot and not raining. Perfect!
All was going really well, the beginners were getting more and more comfortable in their saddles and starting to feel more at ease. A little more than halfway through the ride we were in the process of splitting into two groups so the more experienced riders could go for a run across an open field while the rest of us hung back to follow the road up the hill. My BIL was on a horse named Sun, who’s, um, high-spirited to say the least. As soon as Sun had his head he took off across the field. Sister C and her boyfriend’s daughter D were already running and were about halfway across the field, and both were riding horses they knew and liked. Sister C was on Tequila who was starting to head left towards another road home, and Sun went careening down the field and caught Tequila by surprise, sending him rearing and lurching back to the right. Sun and Tequila collided and Sister C went down- landing on her backside and lower back and then rolling head over heels. Now I was running too- which I never do- because I wanted to make sure Sister C was okay (I’ve had some basic first responder training), it happened so fast. By the time I got there BIL was on the ground too.
Another guy from our group arrived and dismounted to hold Sun while BIL had a look at Sister C, and this friend’s horse- Whisky- promptly took off for home again! Damien went after him but he decided on a shortcut through the forest and Damien couldn’t catch him. Then I arrived and took Tequila and Buck’s reins to make sure they stayed put but I stayed in the saddle. There was a young rider from the farm with us taking one of the little girls on a lead rein and he then lit out for the farm to fetch a bakkie to fetch Sister C. She was very eina* and definitely wouldn’t be riding back. While Sister C found her feet again, Damien was running his horse- Britannica- around the same field, he’d been with us where C fell, but his horse didn’t want to stand still. I shouted to him that he could go if he wanted to and he set off for the farm at a run, glad to have some time to himself.
Nephew M, daughter D and I were ahead of the rest of the group and as far ahead as we were we couldn’t see Damien! By the time we had all arrived back at the house and dismounted it was after 2! We all headed back to Sister C’s place for a braai and to let our backsides recover before driving home. Daddy darling worked today otherwise he would have ridden with us, but when he arrived a little later he insisted on taking Sister C to a doctor or a hospital.
Sister C was admitted with a cracked pelvis and a dislocated right middle finger! Poor baby… if something drastic goes wrong, it’s always Sister C who gets the short end of the stick! She’ll now be in hospital on a catheter and a morphine drip for a couple of days at least! And poor BIL feels horribly guilty even though it was SO not his fault and he’s limping too!
And you know what; it would have been an absolutely perfect day if my baby sister hadn’t hurt herself!