Thursday 29th of July 2021
Pumbaa Goess-Saurau

Pumbaa, The Gap Yah Eventer, Part 10

Hello again Ladies and Gents! Remember me? I know it’s been a while but the ponios are keeping me so busy that when I’m not riding I’m either making coffee, drinking coffee or craving coffee – a full time occupation if you weren’t already aware. Sleep deprivation is seemingly no match for my caffeine whirlwind but even so, there just don’t seem to be enough hours in the day.





Credit: Blackheart Imagery

While my season got off to a cracking start, recently I’ve hit some bumps in the road, as is often the case with horses, so this blog post takes a slightly different tone and will hopefully give you something to think about. Are you sitting comfortably? Then let me begin…

I’ve been around horses all my life, and as such they are such a big part of it that the thought of being without them doesn’t seem to even register in my brain – a notion I’m sure many of you are familiar with. It’s fair (and most of the time relatively accurate) to say that they are some of the kindest, most intelligent and beautiful animals on the planet, in some parts of the world they are actually used as therapists (really not lying, but pretty sure that’s mainly in America and as we know anything goes in The Land Of Dreams).


However, there is something that is easily missed in the small print – add horses to competitive sport and you have a combination that will put you on a roller coaster so insane that, when finished, you’re going to have the hairdo from hell, a dodgy stomach on a par with a serious case of seafood poisoning and for some reason unknown to man, God or beast the insane and mildly suicidal urge to do it all over again. Yet, and here is the tricky part, this roller coaster doesn’t seem to end. Ever.

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 20.48.45

Credit: Blackheart Imagery


W.C Fields once famously said ‘never work with children or animal’s. Admittedly he was an actor born in the late 1800s, but the sane of you out there will realise he had a very good point. That being said, as we’ve already discovered sanity doesn’t really come into the equation where equestrians are involved, and frankly THANK GOD. I really can’t think of anything worse than being considered ‘normal’; not far behind ‘normal’ we can find his friends ‘Dull’ and ‘Average’ – thanks but I’ll pass.

The only problem with this sort of attitude is that you will inevitably have your heart broken. Many. Many. Times. But let’s turn this on its head: while hearts will be broken, and tears will be shed, those tears are not necessarily always ones of sadness.

When you are deeply invested in something – horses, sport, you name it – intense emotions are inevitable. Therefore, while of course there will be trying times it is equally inevitable that you will also visit the other end of the emotional spectrum: joy, elation, relief, pride – the list is endless.

If you’re involved in horses you’ll become well acquainted with both ends of this spectrum, and at times you will undoubtedly question life, the universe and why you put up with the most frustrating, unpredictable animals on the planet. But the answer is simple: when horses put you at the ‘Elation’ end of the spectrum you can forget Cloud 9…you’re somewhere up there on Cloud 99. And it’s those moments, no matter how brief or seemingly inconsequential, that make it all worthwhile.

13051614_1781428325421179_2194557245264357826_n 13235096_10207018956329262_6367495883004254676_o

The point that I’m trying to make is this: persist – you will be knocked on your backside more times than you care to imagine or I care to admit, but anything worth going after is rarely easy. In fact I don’t think I’d be far wrong in saying it’s NEVER easy. Life is short so surely every smile counts, but (*quick disclaimer; here comes a catastrophically cheesy (but secretly enjoyable) cliché:) ‘Everyone wants happiness. No one wants pain. But you can’t have a rainbow, without a little rain’ (it’s bad I know, but really…#sorrynotsorry).

The bottom line is that there wouldn’t be a high if there wasn’t a low – figuratively and literally – so the next time you have one of ‘those’ moments – the moment you would happily leave your four-legged animal on the side of a road with a large sign saying ‘free to a good home and actually it doesn’t even have to be that good’ – just remember that you’re next smile will be that bit brighter because you can look back on said moment knowing that you won. A feeling that never grows old.

The buzz of a high with horses really is unbeatable, and personally I think that’s because of the blood, sweat and tears that it’s taken to achieve it. Knowing that you MADE it happen, that you took life by it’s figurative throat and didn’t take no for an answer. THAT is why you ‘put up’ with it.

So to all of you out there that currently feeling a little hard up on luck, the ones that are currently trying to find paint to write ominous for sale signs, and just generally all those that need a little boost: keep smiling. The storm WILL pass, you just might have to weather it a little longer than the average human being. And if that’s not enough, then just take comfort in the fact that after the amount of ‘character building’ your pony has put you through, you’ll be 500 times the person any ‘normal’ human could ever hope to be…your sense of humour will also be so far advanced that it is possible a whole new strand of evolution is on the cards – Darwin would be proud.

Until next time, Pumbaa x

You may also like…

Join us on Facebook

Follow on Twitter