So for years- decades actually- I have tried so hard to be nice to others. Sure, when I hurt so badly I can barely walk, there's a tendency to get crabby. There have been times when I have not said anything just to see it happen over and over again. Sometimes we horsewomen hurt to the point that we wonder "why".
Why do we keep trudging forward?
Why do we keep putting up with bad pay clients?
Why do we continue dealing with people who ask so many questions (yes, some over and over again) and never seem to absorb the answers?
Why do we put up with the supposed know-it-alls that have it oh so wrong but continue to teach students or train horses in abusive methods incorrectly? ( the worst- others actually believe them)
Why do we deal with fractious horses (their people too) just to have money coming into the barn?
Why do we head to the barn every single day - in knee deep snow, in 100-degree summer heat and springtimes torrential downpours?
Lately, I have once again opened this barn to those in the area who really want to learn how to be around horses in the correct manner. It began with inquiries from various people who when they found out that they (oh my gosh) would have to help at the barn in order to learn more. To me, it's an exchange of help (yes- stalls) and education. The 'barter system" if you may.
It began alright- but slowly but surely things dwindled down to the ever popular " sorry" over and over again. I did my part in teaching all about horses (within a beginners level) Finally it was enough and I am taking the option away. No more "sorry"- no more 'oh this or that happened" the morning of the self-appointed day.
And so it is over. I am finished dealing with people who haven't the smarts to realize that we barn owners/managers have needs too...
A need to be paid on time, a need to have a possible day off, a need to be able to discuss things with clients and not watch/ listen to their excuses, or 'hissy fits' about how terrible we are to even ask to have things accomplished, paid or just to stop gossiping.
Never do /did I want to run my barn or any others as far as that goes with the proverbial Iron Fist. There have been some managers like that and it bothered me. Sadly- now I understand their 'whys'.
I know there are many of barn managers out there who have had bad pay boarders. Those people who don't seem to care whether they get their board or monthly lessons paid. Little do they know (or perhaps they DO know and ignore it??) that a farm is run by their prompt payments- each time, every time. I wonder how many would complain about a board being broken or a fence post loose? Do they ever consider that their late or not at all payments are used for that sort of thing? It is very expensive to keep a barn and farm repaired and safe for animals of any kind. We, horsewomen and men, take in other's animals to care for because we love doing it. Not "just for the money"- but it costs money to keep things safe and in good repair. Feed, hay, bedding, electric and more. Those who make late payments or just never bother are the ones who will be the first to complain or gossip to others who will listen about how bad it is where they board, or ride.
And so it goes and here's one more well educated, willing to help horsewoman who is closing those doors.