What a start to the weekend! For the first time in 5 years I got abuse off a woman whilst out hacking. I don’t think anything p’s me off quite as much as ill informed people who insist on vocalising their opinion. Whilst waiting by a little bridge in out quaint little village to let the traffic through a woman stood quietly by the side of the road. As I rode off I thanked her for waiting and she mumbled ‘you shouldn’t be on the road.’ Not thinking anything of it i just carried on until she told me I should find a nice quiet track to ride down. I stopped, a little flabbergasted and turned round and asked if she was kidding me! I mean, we all choose to ride on the road don’t we- they are the safest places to ride!!!!
The woman repeated it again along with there’s no need to be on the road! Well….I don’t think she bargained on the smiley Saturday hacker to give her what for given she stood mouth wide open! I very politely told her that she clearly knew nothing and she was in no position to voice an opinion when she doesn’t know the facts. I’m quite sure I uttered some other clever response to her before telling her to have good day and trotting off!!!
I was and still am raging about it. I know I shouldn’t but my personality unfortunately doesn’t allow for me to forget about these things!
The best of it was she then shouted back that she used to have 50 horses! THEN YOU SHOULD KNOW BETTER YOU DUMB ASS! What horse rider WANTS to ride on the roads given the choice. There’s literally two bridle ways next to me – one leads to a busy main road and a train track and the other crosses from one road to another so tell me you clever shit, what do you want me to do- fly on my magic unicorn to these tracks?!
Why do people think as horse riders we have access to anyone’s fields and tracks? Are pedestrians allowed to ramble wherever they damn well please? Errrr no that would be trespassing so why do you think it’s any different for riders? I’ve never seen a pedestrian or cyclist told they shouldn’t be on the country roads so why is it acceptable for people to think they can shout at us on horses. I mean, not all pedestrians even walk on the correct side of the road and many cyclists around me don’t wear helmets! And before you say it I know cyclists get abuse ( we’ve all seen the hat cam footage doing the rounds) but I’m talking about round where I live not in towns etc where most of the abuse seems to be aimed at cyclists.
I love the fact that the BHS have put adverts out there to stress the importance to drivers the need to slow down and take care but I feel that’s just angered some people even more in the rage against horse riders using roads. Perhaps highlighting the reasons why we need to use roads might lead to more understanding of the issues we face!
I’m lucky that my horses are good on the roads but I no longer ride and lead as I feel that’s a step too far with the road users as they are. Most are lovely and very friendly but you do still get the odd couple that fly past faster than the Flash! In the end I don’t choose to ride in the roads- I haven’t any option if I want to go for a ride longer than 10mins. Our village is a 30 mph limit so there shouldn’t be any reason for any one to be upset about seeing a horse rider.
Please, to anyone out there who have the same opioion as this spineless individual who didn’t dare say anything until I rode off, think about why we’re on the road. It’s not to piss you off or because we think we’re better than anyone else although when you verbally abuse people who are going about their daily business, then perhaps I am better than you because I would never shout at someone I don’t know and on a topic I don’t understand fully!
I have to say, I do feel better after than rant now even if I do still keep thinking of other clever response’s I could have come out with!!
Toodle pip 😘