Practice was going poorly with Comet, so it seemed. Clearly frustrated, Deborah asked to take a break from the session. Once dismounted, she flung off her helmet. Walking over to it, she kicked it over a fence panel at the opposite end of the practice ring. It is not often Deborah expresses her frustrations. After Elizabeth finished her round, I motioned for her to check up on her sister. They sat together, quietly watching Tara work through the complicated circle exercise. Not a word was exchanged between the two. A few moments later, they hugged and walked over to Trish. My girl had regained her composure. After talking with Trish, Deborah remounted Comet and flawlessly rode the exercise twice through.
While sitting alone, Deborah had taken notice of a handsome grey in the adjoining corral area. He was studiously watching the practice session in between his munching. It was like he understood everything – all the actions of a hunter/jumper going through the paces. The grey wandered off into another part of his corral to take in more of the September sun.
On the way home, Deborah worked on making the troublesome circle exercise course more difficult on her tablet. She asked Elizabeth and Tara for their input on the adjustments. A couple phone calls to Trish, the following week’s exercise course would be more demanding and possibly with a time limit. During the last call, Deborah asked about the handsome grey.
The grey had been abandoned at RRC when its rider/owner suddenly dropped out of the advanced riding class in early summer. Since that person did not return any of Mark’s calls or responded to his letters, he decided to keep the grey. The grey was going to be a project for Mark. He had not been under saddle nor halter trained, and only allowed to have a loose lead rope around the neck. Having a three year old, with a blank slate, is an exceedingly rare opportunity.
G-Man indoors after having his mane and tail trimmed (RRC, Oct 2016)
During the following week’s practice, Deborah made an offer – she would take the grey, train him, keep him as a forever horse pending clearance of the abandonment period and a vet check. Mark thought about it for a few minutes and said he would take the offer. One condition – if the grey proves too much to handle, Deborah is to return him. A handshake deal is made.
It is not like we need another horse. He’s willful, tall, and very muscular. His new name, G-Man. It is only fitting since we have a Secret Agent Man and a Starfleet Captain (Andrew). Will G-Man become a hunter? Only time will tell. But, since that September weekend, G-Man has adjusted to wearing a loose rope halter and has been under saddle three times with Deborah, once with Mark and once with Trish.
G-Man will move down to the JN Ranch soon as he clears the abandonment period on December 19. He has already passed his vet check.