I don’t know if there’s an official term for it, but I’m sure you can relate to what I’m saying.
Let’s say you have a cold, or a hurt finger. While you’re coughing and sneezing or avoiding using the finger, you are very aware of it. But, TOT (tincture of time) being what it is, you don’t notice the lessening of the coughing, you don’t notice the lessening of pain…until you find yourself using that finger to pry open a pill bottle and realize hey, it doesn’t hurt anymore. You hardly notice that you don’t hurt anymore, until something brings it up to your attention.
So is the case with Rebel.
I’ve been back from Australia for a little over a week, taken a lesson on Raven, and been in the barn virtually every night since returning home. Yesterday I was about to leave the barn when I happened to notice that Rebel’s stall was empty, and the placard blank.
I thought, oh my god, she’s sold him to some unwitting person, someone who’s got no idea what a dangerous horse he is. I needn’t have worried.
I interrupted a busy Jorge, where is Rebel?
Oh, you no se? (you don’t know?)
No, I’ve been out of the country!
Well, Julie was in hospital? Maybe she can walk now, I don’t know. She is broken here (pelvis), here, (shoulder), here (ribs). Maybe she can walk someday? Yo no se.
Later, I got the rest of the story from Curtis. So please understand that this is all hearsay, I did not witness any of it.
It sounds like a classic case of ‘What goes around, comes around.” In the few months she’s had Rebel in the barn, Julie had made sure that Jorge, the barn lead, knew that she hated him. Rebel picked right up on it.
Why? I can’t figure it out. He’s a decent man, here legally, pays his taxes, works hard, takes care of everyone’s horse no matter how badly behaved they may be.
To be bloody honest, I think Julie is a bully who hates everyone.
It must be painful to be her. But she’s her own worst enemy. By making enemies of everyone, she can depend on no one. I won’t give her the time of day. To quote one of my First Sergeants, ‘if she were on fire, I wouldn’t piss on her to put her out.’
Bullies, being bullies, go for the people they perceive as weak-and Julie is a bully. Maybe it makes her dick get hard to know that Jorge, a man, is afraid of her. Or, perhaps, she used the horse as a weapon. You see this with folks with pit bulls. The animal stops being an animal and becomes a weapon, a means of intimidating others without using a handgun. Julie prided herself…and sneered at horse folks far more experienced than she-in being able to handle this horse. She made excuses for what Rebel’s behavior, no matter how bad or dangerous it was.
But she really was kidding only herself.
By attacking Jorge, by making him the target for her hatred, by terrifying him with threats of deportation, Julie had ensured that he (not to mention everyone else who has a horse in the barn) would steer wide of her.
On Halloween, (31 October), in the morning, Julie arrived to ride Rebel. Very seldom is anyone at the barn in the morning, other than Jorge and his crew.
Apparently, she’d recently put Rebel in a hackamore (a bitless bridle that she’d earlier resisted using because she insisted it was ‘cruel’). He seemed to like it. That morning, she bridled and saddled him and took him into the round pen.
In the course of his work, Jorge saw her car, but had learned to avoid her at all costs.
It wasn’t until an hour later that he noticed Rebel standing calmly, still saddled and bridled, in the round pen. Rebel had been deemed too dangerous for Jorge to handle, so on the days Julie didn’t arrive before morning feed and turn out, Curtis would feed and put Rebel out before he headed out for his day job.
Jorge peered into the round pen.
Julie lay crumpled against the far wall of the pen. Jorge thought she was dead. Rebel indicated very clearly that he wanted out of the round pen.
He called Curtis, who called 911 for an ambulance. It would take Curtis about 10 minutes to get to the barn. Curtis also had the foresight to call the sheriff.
Then Jorge did a brave thing: he entered the round pen. He knew he had to get Rebel out of there before he could check on Julie. So, despite the horse’s prior attacks on him, Jorge still caught up the horse’s rein, led him into the barn and put him in his stall, still tacked up. Rebel didn’t try to hurt him.
Jorge then went back to check on Julie. I give him so much credit. Julie had always treated him like he was shit, and he was-and is-a gentleman. Even to her.
He found her alive, conscious, and in great pain. For once, she didn’t go for his throat. Maybe it’s because she couldn’t move.
Curtis arrived. They didn’t try to move her, but she could talk. Of course they asked her what happened?
She’d lain there for who knows how long, with a broken pelvis, a broken shoulder and several cracked ribs-without making a sound.
Was this out of pride? She’s a Spartan?
Rebel had finally impressed on her the fact that he was dangerous. That for all her protesting, he no more respected her than any other human. She finally accepted the fact that Rebel, her precious, misunderstood, “timid and abused Rebel”, had tried to kill her.
And still wanted to.
She’d walked him around the round pen a few rounds, then mounted and rode him without problems for several minutes. Rebel had been going ‘nicely’, she dropped the rein for ‘a moment’ and without warning, he ‘exploded’ and either crushed her or threw her into the wall of the round pen.
She told Curtis that she thinks that Rebel stopped running the moment she hit the wall, but she isn’t sure. (I’m conjecturing this, but having been bucked off and landing hard, I knew it took me several moments to get air back in my lungs.)
She said she could hear him right behind her, but she was face into the wall of the round pen. She immediately knew something was wrong with her hips. When she tried to roll over, she moaned in agony. Rebel squealed and either kicked her or stomped her. He kicked her with two hooves, twice. THAT is when her shoulder and ribs were broken. He missed kicking her in the (unhelmeted) head by mere inches.
She froze. She told Curtis she could feel Rebel snuffling behind her, at one point, pushing her back into the wall with his nose. She literally bit through her lip to keep from crying out in pain, or calling for help, because she realized what Rebel was doing. He was waiting for a sign that she was still alive. At which, she knew, he would kick her again.
I think the sheriff beat the ambulance, but not by much. She told the EMTs that she could feel her legs, so they didn’t think her back was broken. Curtis asked the sheriff for a police report. Julie asked him why and he told her, I want the horse off the property. Now. Where do you want him sent to because he needs to be gone.
Julie, with some hesitation…mind you, she was probably on a body board by now and in immense pain. But still, it took her a moment to say “send Rebel to the auction yard, the same one she’d got him from.” The sheriff advised her that selling a dangerous horse without warning a potential buyer is illegal. She snapped, “What law school did you go to? I’m a lawyer.” The sheriff snapped right back, “So is my commander. Take it up with him.”
Apparently even Rebel couldn’t stomp any humility or courtesy into her.
Rebel didn’t leave immediately. While neither Curtis nor I are gossips (which is why it took me so long to find out what happened), he said he’d gotten so sick of Julie’s verbal abuse of others, and fearful for the safety of his employees that he ordered the removal of Rebel from the property without going through the owner first. However, the owner backed him up completely, because his liability insurance premiums were going to go up if the horse wasn’t removed from the premises.
The owner, knowing how vicious Julie was, had his own lawyer visit her in the hospital. That’s when the extent of her injuries were learned, and the consent forms were signed.
She had Rebel put down.
The lifting of the pall of fear he’d created in the barn is palpable. No one in the barn (and we have some real bleeding hearts in it, some folks who would apologize for Osama bin Laden) misses him a bit. For that matter, no one really cares if Julie is going to be able to ride again. She probably will, but no one wants her back here.
This is what happens when someone like Julie shits on the people around her. People learn to avoid her, and when she finally needed someone’s help, only the person who she’d shit on worst of all was there…and brave enough to help, despite her (and that of her horse) treatment of him.