First off I don't know how people travel with horses alone. OK I do know how it is done because I do it all the time but how do you do it well. Without the overwhelming stress and frustration that I get. The actual travel is ok it is when I get to a place and don't have a stall is when it all starts to fall apart for me. I will do anything in my power to never leave my horse unattended. I am just not comfortable with that, but being alone that can sometimes be unavoidable. So to set the stage it is me and my frazzled state of mind and my lovely horsey.
Back story: I have done business with this company ALOT over the last year. I have spent probably 1000's in their place of business. I have purchased, saddle, boots, gloves, breeches, blankets, saddle pads amongst other things along with many lessons with trainer. Last week I trialed the trainers saddle and it did not work for Steady. Laying on his withers of course. In coming to the clinic I was going to return the saddle and asked if I could try one more saddle. It was a wintec that I had put on Steady before and thought it might work. She said yes that would be fine. (this was all done through email). So my ride at the clinic was over and I was attempting to pack everything up and keep Steady happy. Which was all delayed by the simple fact that at some point during our lesson Steady threw a shoe! WTHeck??? It is a sand arena. But more on that later. Just wanted to mention it because it not only added to my stress level but also I spent and extra hour scouring the arena looking for it with no luck. I take Steady along with my arm loads of stuff to the trailer. I tie him to the trailer and give him his hay bag to try to calm him. He was still antsy and calling out which always makes me nervous(I hope to get more comfortable with all of it but it is just what it is right now). So I was trying to figure out the best way to go about switching the saddles out. I saw the trainer out at the outdoor arena watching the clinic. So I decided I would run in and switch out the saddles then grab her and let her know. So I did just that as quickly as I could. When I got back out to the trailer everyone had made their way to the indoor now. So I put the saddle on Steady and thought, this doesn't look like it will work...hmmm. Well I am running behind I will just try it and bring it back. So I threw it in the truck and attempted to load Steady who of course decided to be a butt and not load. So I grabbed the closest person I could find and asked for some assistance. We got him in and I thanked them for their help. As I was doing so Steady started dancing around in the trailer and calling. So I jumped in the truck and hit the road because that is what settles him down. I got home and unloaded Steady, went inside and plopped on the couch in exhaustion.
The next morning I go out to my truck open the door and say "SHIT, I have that saddle. And I never told Amanda I took it!!" Well I will let her know. I mean she knew about it and said it was ok but I still wanted to give her the heads up before I left, So I sent her an email yesterday morning saying that I had forgotten to tell her I grabbed the saddle before I left. She replied and said that I needed to call with my credit card info and the price of the saddle. I asked if she planned to charge me because if I misunderstood about the trial I would bring it back today! And this was her reply:
I'm not going to charge you for it, but I was at the clinic the WHOLE day on Sunday. You should not have taken it without someone from the store pulling the tag, as some of the saddles are on consignment and belong to other people. It's about proper channels Amy... Emailing me after you have taken it, is a little odd and feels like stealing... While we are low key here, we can only stay that way, if everyone is up front. I don't mind you "trialing" saddles, but not one every week so you have something to ride in while you save pennies for a new saddle, that's why we allow horses to haul-in and try on saddles and ride in the indoor.
Please make sure the saddle is back in the shop on Friday.
And though I agree with her that I was in the wrong about not going through the proper channels I still do not like to be accussed of stealing. Or accussed of "trialing" saddles while I save up my "pennies" WTF?! I am trying to find a saddle to fit my horse. I have only trialed ONE saddle from them before this one and that was the one I returned at the clinic. That I had for less than a week. Not to mention the fact that my saddle is in their store on consignment which is worth way more than the crappy torn up wintec I took out. I was super appologetic and this is my reply:
You are right and I am so sorry. I really screwed up. I just want to explain to you how it happened. I did not do it on purpose. I tend to get really stressed trailering Steady alone. I hate to leave him unattended for fear something could go wrong. I saw you sitting and watching the clinic and tried to think of the best way to go about it all. So I thought I will grab the saddle real quick while you were watching the clinic then get with you to staighten it all out. Steady was calling and acting nervous and when I went to load him he wouldn't load. I guess I got all caught up in that I completely forgot to get with you. It was an idiotic thing to do and again I am so sorry. I will have the saddle back tomorrow by 12:30 and won't even ride in it. I am a very honest person and I would never steal anything and even the idea that someone would think I am makes me want to get this taken care of as soon as possible. So I will pick up my daughter from school at 11 am and come straight there. It was not my intention to "use" it until I got another. It was just the only other saddle I ever remember fitting Steady when we tried them on him the very first day I brought him there. So I was honestly just trying to find a saddle to fit him. I will not trial anymore saddles from your store for sake of you feeling taken advantage of. I cannot appologize enough for doing this it was an honest mistake. I am not saving pennies for a new saddle. I will not be purchasing a new saddle. I was hoping that I could but it is not going to work at this time. That is another reason I was hoping I could make the Wintec work. I really hope you and Jane can forgive this mistake and I cannot appologize enough for my actions on Sunday. I did not mean to do it. I would also like to pick up my Coventry that I left there for consignment when I come on tomorrow. If I need to speak to Jane to straighten it all out I would be more than happy to do so. Again I will be there tomorrow by 12:30 and make this right. I am so sorry.
Jane is the owner of the stable/tack store Amanda is the barn manager. I doubt Jane knows anything about it but she is the owner so I wanted to make sure I was covering my bases. So yesterday I felt like a real idiot for what happened and was completely beating myself up about it but today I realized that I made an honest mistake with a person and business that I have given alot of money to. Then to be accused of stealing and using their saddles just until I got a new one, that kind of pissed me off. So I was going to walk in their like a cowering dog with my tail between my legs and maybe that is what I should do but now I plan to walk in their with my dignity still entact and let them know just that. That I have done enough business in their store and stable to be given the benefit of the doubt especially when I immediatly tried to make it right. Then to be scolded and made to feel as if I had intentionally done them wrong. No I am not going to stand for it. So I plan to walk out of there with my consignment saddle and my self esteem and know that it was a mistake we all make them and there are plenty of other places that I can give my business to!
So am I wrong? I am ok with you calling me out if I am.