Yesterday I saw this and put "ride Horton" first on today's to-do list:
Unfortunately, the forecast got one small detail wrong. Make that "AM Light Rain" on Friday. :-/
But by the time I finished morning chores, the light rain had slacked off to a barely noticeably mist, so I tacked up. (After 23 years here, I know I have to take advantage of any break in the weather in order to ride during the rainy season!) I was well into warming up Horton when my right foot, aided by wet sand on the bottom of my boot, slipped forcefully off the stirrup pad. Horton spooked sideways, I reacted, he jumped again and threw in a buck (I think; it all happened so fast), and I came off. I'm not even sure how I landed as I cannot remember the impact and nothing hurts except the tendons in my right hand and wrist from hanging onto the rein too long. I was on my feet in a flash, growling and chasing Horton around the arena like an angry she-bear. After making a believer out of him (and a good cardio workout on my part), I got him galloping around me in a circle free-lunging. When I finally asked him to walk and then halt, he obeyed promptly and politely. He stood like a rock while I walked up to him, lead him to the arena fence, and remounted.
Wow, what a transformation! We went from Intro to First Level in one fell (heh) swoop! Horton was focused, forward, round and on the bit, executing sharp shoulder-ins, leg yields and canter departs (well, except for one – and a deep growl and volte from me got a quick "Yes, Ma'am!" from him). When we finished, he gave me excellent stretchy trot circles on a long rein followed by lots of good free walk on a long rein – which he needed. In spite of the 50 degree temp and increased precipitation (by now dripping steadily off my helmet), Horton's neck was lathered from his largely self-imposed workout. There might have even been a little lather "between his ears" in that little brain of his. I do believe this morning's incident may have been "one jump backwards, three jumps forward" in his training and behavior modification; hard to feel bad about that. :-)
Now, where was that camera crew? I want to see the instant replays during a post-game analysis!