I was once an Equestrian. Sounds pretty snooty, doesn't it? In all honesty, my childhood was rather advantageous. Now I certainly don't mean to sound 'uppity' because there were many dark days and that was long ago and far away. My horse, then, was my solace, and the stable was my sanctuary. My 'barn family' was a group of sport-loving, wealthy people of mixed ages and a rather bizarre man that trained us all. We traveled often to horse shows about the country. Our tack and other supplies too numerous to count, followed us in big monogrammed horse vans. In one would be "Sunrise County," a grey thoroughbred gelding standing about 16.3 hands. 'Andy' as he was called, was once a race horse, but his days on the track weren't prosperous. As a hunter/jumper he occasionally excelled.
Oh, we flew over colorful fences in those show rings, and paraded hard earned ribbons. We showed in the rain and the heat and the hail. I broke a few bones, and cried many a heart-felt tear. Andy's neck was always the place to snuggle and whisper about the hard-knocks and 'tragedies' that a young girl felt. Over weight and rather awkward, I had an identity as a rider...knew that all was right in my world when atop of this stead.
I recall the sights and sounds and smells of those days. I recall the angst when Andy was sold to a young boy because college was calling. I recall that I loved that animal with my very soul. " Now entering the ring, number forty-two, Sunrise County."