Once again, I am calling upon greater experience.
In a future sequence that I am currently plotting out, the heroes have escaped the clutches of the villains, and emptied the stables, to frustrate immediate pursuit by the villain's household cavalry. The heroes return to their friends out in the countryside, to find said friends are in danger. Some of these friends have NO riding experience.
One of them does indeed have riding experience, though it is with donkeys, rather than horses. My question is, is there a great deal of difference between riding a horse and a donkey? Would someone with moderate donkey riding experience be able to handle a horse?
I'm asking because my riding experience is limited to a week at horse camp when I was a Girl Scout, and that was over 30 years ago. I did ride a donkey once, because there is a picture of me in the family album mounted on one - when I was about 2 years old.
Donkeys are very tiny.....if you're adult, your feet would about touch the ground.
Lower center of gravity = far less stability, regarding center of balance. Donkeys, like little ponies, are easy EASY to tumble off of, for this reason (if you are a full grown adult).
They also have minds of their own, and can be Quite stubborn. (understatement) Particularly if a rider does something that ticks them off. They won't forget, or come around, and they will kick and connect, what they aim at.
Yeah, I rode one belonging to a neighbor, as a kid. Not the most delightful riding experience! Could be that animal was spoiled....but I'm not so sure, knowing how a mule acts.
You'd probably get better and more accurate insight on a donkey enthusiast's forum. My experience isn't very broad, in this area....
Thank you! As mentioned above, my equestrian experience is VERY limited.
In this case, out of a group of nine heroes, only 4 have extensive riding experience (nobility) and the rest are learning. Their compatriot has only the donkey experience. This is going to be tricky, because even though they emptied the royal stables to stall the pursuit of household cavalry, I don't think it will be that great an advantage in very short order. The experienced riders are going to be beset in helping the inexperienced riders survive and in evading cavalry.
This is a great deal more information than I had in the beginning, Janny, and it is a great help, even as the information about becalmed ships helped, too.
So, from the bottom of my heart, a HUGE
If I recall precisely, in the film version of Name of the Rose, the hero who's a priest rides in on a donkey (and out) - this will give you a sense of scale. (Adult men on donkeys look a bit ridiculous)
The film happens to be a good one, too. Least it's one of my favorites....a mystery set in a monastery library?? How could it miss!
Go rent it.
Oh, and the casting is top notch.