Trudy Andrew | Canadian Author

Horse Tails

Higgins and Future Hubby

Over the course of a few days, Higgins was allowed to simply eat, rest and revel in a good deal of attention. He loved any sort of grooming, had favourite places to be scratched, and brightened at the sight or smell of a carrot or apple. He was proving himself to be extremely sociable, which was exactly what I had hoped for future hubby. I very much wanted him to have the same connection with with Higgins, as I had with Thow-ra. After a few days of rest and relaxation, Higgins was far perkier. It was time for future hubby to really learn what his new horse was all about. He already knew that Higgins was barn and herd soured. It was time to begin to convince him that going out, even on your own and without the security of other horses, wasn’t the end of the world. Future hubby saddled up, slipped the bridle on with no trouble at all, then headed up and out the driveway, walking. Watching them go, I was absolutely certain the man would win over the beast. After all, future hubby was almost as tenacious as I was, almost.
He would walk until Higgins quit trying to turn back, then he’d mount up and ride. In the beginning that was, just over two miles. As the days passed, the distance before he could climb aboard lessened, until one amazing day, when he was able to ride out right from the barn. It was finally time for phase two, of Higgins new life with us. I was going to ride along on Thow-ra.
We took the opportunity to ride whenever we had the opportunity, not always an easy thing to manage, when your work day started at 4 or five in the morning, and often went to eight in the evening. On top of that, if one of the trucks needed repairs of any kind, future hubby would often work late into the night on it. Those were the evenings that I would take Higgins out on my own. We certainly didn’t want him to fall back on his old ways again. It was good for him to be ridden without a buddy now and again. I found Higgins to be willing, athletic and a good deal of fun to ride. He had a long walk, a lovely, smooth trot, as well as a canter like a rocking chair. All in all, he was a most excellent horse.

A favourite ride out was to nearby gravel pits. At thst time, the trails that wound through the thick bush surrounding the pits, were some of my favourite haunts. There used to be a local hunt club, and they had all kinds of natural jumps along some of the trails. Thow-ra and I loved to gallop along, taking the jumps as we came to them. Higgins had proved to us that he could jump when he wanted to. I simply couldn’t resist. I had to see what, future hubby’s new boy could do. To my delight, he loved to jump as much as I did, and it was a blast.
The weekend arrived, and for once, future hubby didn’t have to work on the trucks. We had two glorious days to ourselves, and we made the most of them. Riding along the trails, back of the gravel pit, I avoided the ones that were laced with jumps. Future hubby may have proven that he could stick like a woodtick, but there was no reason to push that fact. Still, when we happened upon a low, stone jump, future hubby wanted to give it a go. He’d seen me tearing along bareback, flying over whatever looked jumpable, many a time. I suppose it looked to be as much fun as I thought it was. He wanted to experience it, too. He was determined. I conceded.

“It’s low,” I slowly mused, “and I’ve gone over it lots of times. Just canter up to it nice and easy, and he’ll pop right over, no problem at all.”
“You go first,” he urged, smiling with anticipation while giving me a nod, “I’ll follow.”
Thow-ra and I obligingly did as he asked, then waited just off the trail, a little further along. Watching with anticipation, I didn’t expect anything but the same for future hubby, as I had experienced many a time. They started off well enough. Higgins was asked for a canter, and immediately responded. They approached the jump and everything looked about perfect. Sure, they were both all dressed out Western, yet the jump was low, and I figured it was as good a time to try as any. As I sat there, smiling and watching, the canter dropped down to a slow trot, then near stop right before the low wall. As if in slow motion, Higgins reared up and sprung almost straight into the air above the jump. Somewhere at the peak of that launch, future hubby and Higgins parted company. Up, up, up future hubby went. Lifting off the horse much like a toy rider being taken off a plastic, toy horse would be. Surely it happened in the blink of an eye, yet it seemed almost freeze-framed, each clip of action held for a millisecond to be watched and amused by. They landed together on my side of the wall and stood there, properly side by side, as if the whole stunt had been choreographed and carefully planned. Future hubby appeared somewhat surprised, standing there, right where they’d landed. The ends of the split reins, still in hand, cowboy hat, still perfectly in place on his head. Higgins stood quietly, seemingly awaiting instruction, as if it wasn’t out of the ordinary, for his rider to dismount in midair.
As for me, I laughed so hard, tears ran from my eyes, and I fell off my horse!


  1. Hahahahahahaha

  2. Oh my gosh! Lived it Trudy! Amazing your man landed on his feet!

  3. Too funny! Although I chuckled throughout, I downright laughed out loud at the last sentence!

    • Balance, especially when I really laugh, has always been a problem. I’m pleased that you got a chuckle from the story.

  4. oh my word, that’s a wonderful unscheduled dismount story. I’m crying here lol

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About Trudy Andrew

Trudy Andrew lives on a small farm just east of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she enjoys her Morgan horses. A dreamer since she was a child, its no surprise to those who know her well that her imagination would find an outlet in writing, as it has in the past through artwork.
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 Oakbank, MB