Years ago I had a quarter gelding, Strider. I owned his mother Winnie. She was a Cal Bar mare. Nice mare. She'd had her hock broken when she was coming four. A pony and a gelding sandwiched her between them, and kicked the snot out of her I guess. Busted her hock. I got her when she was 8. She'd had two foals. The folks that had her, had been riding her. I got her so she wouldn't be ridden, could hang in the field, and make me a foal. This was back in '88. There is no way I could have afforded this mare if she wasn't so damaged. I also really liked the mare. I'd tried to purchase the filly she had at two days old. One of those, 'omg...that's the horse' moments. Doesn't happen to me often. It's immediate, I can't explain what it is...it's just a feeling.
So, the owner of the mare said I could buy the filly when she was weaned. I showed back up when she was five months old. The owner said, "Oh, our daughter wants to keep her. So we sold her to our daughter for $1000." I almost had a full blown temper tantrum on the spot. I didn't...I bought the mare, and the older gelding. Screw em, I'll make my own. Yeah, the conceit of youth.
I bought the gelding for my boyfriend the chef. His name was Ohm. Gotta love it. He was very calm...do anything you asked. Ohm fit him. Kind of like the meditation mantra ...'ohhhhhmmmmm'.
So, I bred Winnie to Poco Joe Satan. Terrible name. Great horse. 15+h black AQHA stallion, by Hot Lightning out of a Poco Bueno bred mare. I knew the stallion well. I used to work and ride him, and handle him for breeding. We got on well. You didn't pick at him, but you didn't give any ground either. You just had to be clear, and fair and he was great. He had a sense of humor. As I've noted before, not always a good thing in a horse. I swear that horse could tippy toe...stealth horse. I was bent over cleaning out his water trough one day. Never heard him. He put his nose on the back of my neck and blew. Scared the living crap out of me. I jumped about 5' in the air, screeched and swung my arm at him as I turned. He hopped backwards, just out of range, ears straight up like he was grinning at me and saying, 'What? I didn't do anything.'
I remember one afternoon I was riding him out on the trails. He decided he wanted to go one way, when I wanted to go another. We were at an impasse. He was a stout old boy. I couldn't even bend his neck. I was like the little kid on my giant Shetland pony that wouldn't move. I'd yard on the reins, kick his side, kick his shoulder, lean and pull. Yeah, my big 120lbs was really going to knock him off balance. (Bastard) So now I'm cussing him. Giving him the Alpo lecture (you know...'Do you know what Alpo is? Do you want to be Alpo....) basically starting to nut up.
He's a giant black rock underneath me. Well, he takes a step in the direction he wants to go. Steps on a branch that snaps and drills him right in the gut...or further back, not really sure. He thought I'd gut shot him. He rocked back on his hocks, and turned the direction I wanted to go in the first place, at a pretty good clip. I slowed him up...pet his neck and said, "Good boy." You bet...take your gifts when they present themselves. Serendipity. That sulling up...we call 'Poco Bueno-ing Out'. Stubborn...but once you win, you win forever.
Well, the lady that owned Satan sold him to Winnie's owner. The new owner thought it was cool to have him all wound up a blowy. (Yeah, novice). Satan was more than happy to oblige. It's a good thing whoever trained him originally had really ingrained his manners on him. Satan never hurt these people. I remember one day the owner came running in the drive with Satan. He'd take him on walks. He wasn't much into riding. Well, Satan saw my colt Shad, and wanted to go visit over the fence. So he's basically dragging this guy over there. The guy tries to set his heels, and is kind of skiing-skipping along. Well, he gets to the apple tree. He thinks if he plants his left foot against the tree, and braces with his right foot on the ground, he's going to stop this 1200+ pounds of testosterone that is in motion.
It levered the guy through the air. It was like he leaped through the air off his left foot that he'd placed about three foot up that apple tree. (Think para-sailing) He landed in a face plant and let go of the rope. Satan jogged on over to talk to the yearling, oblivious the havoc he'd created behind him. The guy jumps up and says, "Well I'll be damned." At this point I started cracking up. Told him, "I've never seen anyone catch that much air. It was like a Tom & Jerry cartoon. " The guy was a good sport, and is laughing too. Then he tells me he used to be a wing walker. The guy is an adrenaline junky. He now builds canons and blows things up. He's great fun, and has great stories.
His wife on the other hand is always getting hurt. It's like inevitable. You ever meet people like that? She decided she wanted to groom Satan one day. So, I get sent out to supervise, and handle the horse while she grooms. She's grooming away, brushing his tail and falls down. Falls right under the stallion. I tell her, "Just roll away, get clear, then stand up." She wallows herself around until she's sitting 'indian style' directly behind the stallion. Before I could say or do anything she reaches out and grabs his hock with one hand, and his tail with the other and heaves herself out of the dirt. I quit breathing. Satan whips his head around and looks at her, whips it back to look at me. Little wrinkles above his eyes...like, "What the hell? Did you see that?"
After she left I went inside with the previous owner. She made me a White Russian.