Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Should've Been A Cowgirl

Should’ve learned to rope and ride…Alright enough of the Toby Keith singalong on to the blogging.

First, I have to apologize for slacking on the blogging. I've been very busy as of late doing things like planning a friend's wedding, I mean blind date, being a sushi scholar, and nearly being killed by a horse. Speaking of horses.......

I’m going to tell you a little secret about me. Shhh…it’s something I’m not proud of. Deep breath, ok, here it goes. I am NOT a cowgirl. Oh how I wish I was but sadly, I’m not. I don’t think I’d ever even been on a horse until I became the Prairie Princess and we had one of our own. I blame my parents for raising me in the city where the only horseback riding I ever got to do was when they put a quarter in the electric one at KMart. I always loved horses and thought it was so cool that those country folk got to have them in their backyard. That was probably the thing I was most excited about when GI Joe whisked me off to live on the prairie…that I could have a horse. GI Joe also loves horses and knows a thing or 2 about them. But growing up they were too busy being farmers and actually caring for pigs and cows and stuff to make money that he didn't have a horse. So he too, wanted to own horses and had dreams of having a pasture full of horses and being able to go on long romantic horseback rides with his gorgeous bride (I might’ve embellished that part slightly).
It wasn’t too long after we settled in the country that we got our first horse…Beauty. She was the first real member of the Koons Zoo. I may have purchased Beauty without GI Joe knowing when I was left unattended with his aunt at a family dinner who had a horse for sale. Sometimes I “forget” to ask him about things. Oops. He forgave me and we’ve enjoyed horse ownership ever since.

I thought all it took to be a cowgirl was to get some boots, a hat, some cowgirl jeans (you know the kind that enhance the "assets") and you were set. You can just imagine how my first ride on Beauty went. I thought I would just hop on bareback looking cute, like they did in those western movies . GI Joe just smiled and shook his head as I headed off into the sunset thinking I was quite the cowgirl. Until, Beauty got a tickle or something and took off at a slightly higher rate of speed than I was comfortable with and started bucking a little. And I did what any cool cowgirl would do....started screaming "HELP I'm gonna die!!!" at the top of my lungs. Note to self: I think when you freak out when riding a horse it tends to freak them out too. MIraculously, I was not injured. I've learned a few things since then but now that we're up to 5 horses I thought it time I get serious about this cowgirl thing.

I've been doing some reading.

Here are a few things I've learned so far:

1) I know absolutely NOTHING about horseback riding and it's an act of God that I'm still here after the many times I've hopped on thinking I knew what I was doing.

2) Contrary to popular belief "pretty" is not an actual horse description. Apparently, there are words like bay, chestnut, and dapple. I still think "pretty" does a much better job of cutting to the chase. Who cares if a horse is bay if it's not pretty?!?

3) While "whoa" and "giddy up" are the only commands I've ever used with our horses the books say there are many, many more. This could explain why I've never gotten very far on horseback. It also says that you shouldn't have to speak the commands that the horse can just feel what you want them to do. I say it's much more fun to holler "yee haw" and "giddy up" so at least you sound like Roy Rogers.

4) I know NOTHING about horseback riding. Oh did I mention that already? Just wanted to make sure you knew.

5) The book forced me to reevaluate my riding attire. Did you know tennis shoes are not recommended for horseback riding? That's funny because that's usually what I'm wearing when I'm outside and get the urge to hop on a horse. I have 3 pairs of cowgirl boots but they are more about looking good when I go to a country concert than for practical use. Turns out they make cowgirl boots and jeans specifically made for horseback riding! There's a reason cowboys/cowgirls wear Wranglers. WHO KNEW?!? So I HAD to go shopping.

I think these are just what the doctor ordered to make me a real cowgirl. And if not at least they'll look cute with my mini skirt and tank top for the next concert. Just kidding, I'm too old to be trying to pull off the Taylor Swift look or am I.....?

6) The books highly encourage riders to wear, get this....not cowboy hats, but HELMETS!! That kind of ruins the cowboy/cowgirl look don't you think? Don't hate me but I think I'm going to take my chances and skip the helmet. You can say I told you so if I ever get bucked off and hurt my head. But you've read the stories about my head injuries, you should know I have a very thick skull, I'm not scared.

We do have one cowgirl in the family.

I taught her everything she knows... or not. She has learned one thing from me though, to never ever hop on any of the horses and allow me to lead the horse around. Only bad things happen when I do that. She's much better off on her own.
Soon I will start to implement what I"ve learned from my educational books. As soon as I heal from a few weeks ago when I tried to hop on one of our newer horses. Let's just say I had one leg on the horse, one leg on the ground and the horse decided to take off. It took me a minute to get my leg from off the horse and in the meantime, if it's possible to dislocate one's, ummm.... girl parts, that's exactly what happened. I wasn't yelling YEE HAW that's for darn sure.
Or maybe I'll just stick to petting the horses and go thru life being a wannabe cowgirl with my cute boots, only time will tell.....

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