So although I had begun to accept the fact that I needed a major plan B which involved selling the Platypus, it took a while to get the wheels turning.
Let's see... I was now probably 3 weeks into my first month of board at Frau Trainerin's place - which means, that by the time I gave the dreaded "30 days notice", then found someplace to send the Platypus to be sold, where chances are, I would have to move in the first of the month - I was looking at another 5 weeks (and $1000+ in board) with the Frau.
(Yep. Add sigh here).
When next we met, I told her that I was taking her advice to heart, and would begin the process of finding a new home for the Platypus. But in the meantime - I would like to continue on with my lessons (seeing as I had paid for them and all).
"Lessons on the Platypus? What on Earth for? I have several sales horses here that will be perfect for you. Why not start trying them out?"
Uhhh... for a few reasons. First, shelving a horse that I planned to sell for the most money I could eek out hardly seemed to be in my best interests. Call me nuts, but I figured that working to chip away at his no-go problem and to really spruce up his flatwork could only improve his value. It was bad enough he would not be jumping for a few months now before being sold... to put him out to pasture seemed like a really bad idea.
Secondly - I could come nowhere NEAR to affording ANY of the horses that Frau Trainerin had for sale. I did my best to explain this to her. Once I left.. I would be gone-gone. For a long time. Based on the bit of internet shopping I had done, using estimated calculations on the monster profits I stood to earn on the sale of the Platypus.. I figured I would be lucky to have the money to buy a nice, unbroken 2 year old, let alone an imported first level horse, or whatever it was she was planning on fixing me up with. You could have me and the Platypus NOW (which she already vetoed) or ... nothing. Nada. Bye Bye, for at least six months to a year.
I am not sure if this pissed her off, or what (back to Psychology Today). But what it did earn me was... a new saddle to use for the rest of my stay.
Exhibit #2 - Your Saddle - It Still Sucks.
Well ok, she said... But if I was going to be riding with her for another 5 weeks - it would most certainly NOT be in the Tristan. Or any of the other nice leathery saddles which she possessed. Nope - until I got my new horse, and my new Schleese... this would be my saddle:
|Oh, I hope she does sitting trot|
Thank god for Google images. Because for many years, I have told people about the existence of this legendary saddle, and they have thought I was totally full of shit. How could such a thing possibly have been created. It sounds ridiculous.
Well tonight, I googled "purple wintec" and presto - I share with you... the saddle. Honestly, it was purple - and it is kind of hard to see in this photo, but it also had a creepy little koala embossed right near the crotch region, with his arms outstretched and a big anticipatory smile. It was as if he were saying, "yah, baby, c'mon over and have a seat right here on my face".
I don't know what sick saddle designer came up with this, but I can imagine that they had a huge laugh with their friends over a beer when they got home that night. Maybe they were drinking beer while designing the saddle. Whatever. Why wouldn't you put the koala on the flap? Honestly... Creepy koalas aside, the bottom line is - I try not to be a victim of fashion, the saddle doesn't make the rider, blah blah blah... but hey, I am only human. I felt like a giant tool riding my dorky pony around in this get-up.
To make matters worse, the only other riders who used the koala cunnilingus saddle were 12 year olds. So, before I could tack up my steed, I had to wait for the other children to finish first. Play nice, Dressage Curmudgeon. Some day you will get to ride in a real saddle like the other big kids.
I cannot believe, to this day, that some form of gel pad or riser pad or maxi pad or something did not exist on this earth to somehow make the Tristan fit the Platypus (especially seeing as - someone calling themselves a fitter had sold it to me). Or, that there was not some other normal saddle available in the collection of saddles at the barn for me to ride in, if the Tristan was really total garbage. I have long since wondered if the purple wintec was some form of psychological warfare designed to bring me to my knees and beg my banker to extend my line of credit to the point where I could afford the stunning Hanoverian and shiny new schleese that Frau Trainerin had waiting for me in the back stall.
But probably I am just crazy for thinking this.