Thursday, June 19, 2014

Throwback Thursday

One of my favorite pictures of myself - with my beautiful Arabian gelding, Sam.  This was one of my senior pictures.  At the time, my aunt lived in what is now our "old" house, right next to our new house, and the photographer lived across the street.  My aunt was able to stable my horse at her house for a few days and bring him across the street just for these pictures when we were ready.  You can't tell because the photographer touched it out of the picture, but I actually have a fresh 3-inch scar on my chin that day that Sam gave me when he accidentally kicked me on a trip out west just two weeks before this.

Sam was my buddy - I cried all my teenager problems into his mane.  My aunt had brought him home from the auction when I was 10 and he had exploded off the trailer in a bundle of fire and nerves.  He was feisty but really nothing but skin and bones.  I spent the first 3 years I had him working on building trust - long hours just brushing him, feeding him, talking to him, sitting in the barn sketching him, braiding his mane on rainy days.  Slowly we worked up to riding - he was only 5 years old but so badly abused that he was terrified of everything and run on barrel-racing so much that he flipped himself backwards at the sight of a drum barrel.  As we grew up together, he became bonded to me very strongly.  When he was scared I could put a bare hand on his neck and tremble as he might, he would follow me through whatever scary thing there was.  Eventually we were able to return to barrel racing, parades, and some judged trail competitions through obstacles successfully.  When age set in and he was unable to be ridden much, he enjoyed his years as a pasture horse, following me everywhere.  He would always keep an eye toward the house and whiny as I went in and out of the house.  
He enjoyed the companionship of a retired police horse who came to us his last few years, and after the police horse had to be put down, we got the pony as his companion.  He was 26 when I finally had to make the difficult decision to put him down.  He had almost no teeth left and his metabolism that had always been a problem just meant his body was not able to keep up despite the diet of warm mash and supplements he enjoyed.  It was New Year's Eve day and he was laid to rest with his police horse companion just a few feet away under the shade of the trees at the edge of this rock pile.  My grandparents' house looks out at this field and so I am able to "visit" them often.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That is a wonderful picture of you both.