Since finding out about my friend's poor horse breaking her leg and having to be PTS (posted about it in general equestrian chat), Rookie's been on my mind all day. For those that don't know, when I lived in Dubai I had a few horses on loan then I was given a little chestnut rocket by some local guy who seemed to like to give girls horses She was about 14.1hh (I never measured her properly but she was tiny ), 8yrs old, part bred arab mare. She had been on the riding school for a few months but kept breaking children. She was a speedy little thing and jumped for fun but schooling definitely wasn't her strong point. I spent months working on our brakes and eventually we were doing dressage People that knew her found it hilarious. We even won quite a few big competitions! I was so proud of her. I still jumped her from time to time. She absolutely loved it. Jump offs were her forte. I'd just steer her in the right direction, contain the energy until she was about to explode then let her go a few strides before the jump! (and sometimes close my eyes ).
Confidence has never been my strong point but I never felt scared on Rookie. She really looked after me. We had so many good times together in our short pairing. One particular thing that sticks in my mind was when two school horses came back from the desert without riders and the yard owner asked me if I could take Rookie out to find the riders. We went flying through the desert looking for them, it was amazing. I know it was a serious situation (one had hurt her back) but I've never felt so elated! Adrenaline, desert sunset, my beautiful pony. Really made me think of the Jinny & Shantih books!
We were hacking out one night in the desert. She'd been a very good girl all week with her schooling so we just went out for a quiet pootle about. We came across a bunch of local lads on quad bikes. Rookie was alright with them but I wasn't so I made sure to keep a very wide berth (I'm talking at least 200m from the furthest one out). A few minutes later one of them set off in our direction. The other 3 followed him like a pack of vermin. I figured they'd get bored so I cantered along the path at the bottom of a sand dune. I can't remember a hell of a lot to be honest but basically one of them got so close they clipped her back leg, she spooked (obviously) and fell sideways into the sand dune. I fell clear of her (see..she always looked after me). I remember sitting on the side of the dune screaming. The absolute ******* ******** had all driven off and it was me and Rookie. She was thrashing about and there was blood everywhere. I don't really want to go into any more detail. I don't remember it but I apparently called my friend at the yard and a bunch of people drove out to us. She was put to peace there and then. I don't even remember getting back to the yard or going home. The mind is a wonderful thing, it'd be too painful to remember that now.
Wow...lots of typing there. Sorry about that, didn't mean to go on for as long! Here are the pics I have of her in this country. Hopefully next time I go back I'll be able to have a thorough route around and find more. There weren't that many to start with really. Was before digital cameras were popular and I didn't have my own camera so had to rely on the parents!
Something obviously a lot more interesting over there..
Ah to be that thin again Think this was before some SJ we did (don't worry, I got changed before I went in!).
One day event, having some noms
And some of our rosettes that I have here. Please ignore the posters, it's my sewing room
And finally our plate thing that we won at a dressage festival. Not bad for a pony that 'doesn't do schooling'
RIP my beautiful girl. It's been 7yrs but I still think about you all the time.