Sunday, July 13, 2008
Warning: This photograph has absolutely no relevance to this story at all. None.
One lesson I have learned in my short time on this planet is that if you surrender the reins in life, rather than attempt to control them, things go much easier.
Of course this rule does NOT apply to actual horses. And it most certainly does not apply to Shetland ponies. In particular it did not apply to Frisky.
When I was young, I took horseback riding lessons. My mother's mother's sister's son's wife--for goodness sakes some relative-in-law--gave the lessons. This individual also taught me various classes at school; then certain days of the week I'd go to her house and figure out how to stay on top of a crazy pony.
To prove it was the pony, and not me, who was crazy, I offer the following data from my childhood diary:
Monday, January 28, 1974 (just turned 9)
Today I went to school. I went to riding lessons. I rode Yogi. Charlotte rode Frisky,* and Dee Dee rode Lady. We went trail riding. When we were coming home, Charlotte got bucked off **of Frisky. Frisky ran up the hill. Then Lady started cantering real fast and tried to catch up with Frisky. I was the ONLY one who didn't have a wild pony.***
-Chesapeake Bay Child
* CBC rode Frisky before. Frisky was a Shetland pony. Who was crazy.
** CBC got bucked off of Frisky on a trail ride, too, and Crazy Frisky stepped on her ankle. CBC wised up and begged for another pony after that, and was still astonished when Charlotte got bucked off at precisely the same spot in the trip as CBC. Frisky was crazy.
***At least THIS go 'round.
Here's what would happen. That tiny little dust speck of a pony, cute as a bug's ear, would go out with some poor, unsuspecting child on her back. On the way home, she knew it would be feeding time at the barn once she arrived. Frisky didn't care if the person on top of her got there safely or not. Frisky only wanted the handful of grain that'd be in her stall back at the barn.
So after Frisky completed a certain portion of said trail ride, Frisky said to HECK with someone trying to control me. No matter how hard you pulled, yanked, hollered or cried, that pony was on a mission and there was absolutely no stopping her. In fact, the more you did all that, the worse it became. She used to say, "Please. Stop all your efforts. I'm just going to run faster and more out of control the more you do all that, and if you don't fall off on your own, I'll just give a little buck and send you on your merry way." I know because I heard her say it to me once. Then, she bucked me off and stepped on my ankle.
You could not control Frisky. It was futile.
The same sort of futility involved in trying to control ants in Mathews.
Contrary to the point I was trying to make initially about not resisting things such as a crazy pony or a crazy life and just accepting the ride as it comes, I cannot and will not ease the reins on these ants. So exactly what the point is of all this, I'm not sure.
Other than Frisky was crazy.