Sovereign reluctantly endures my hug, shooting a sideways glance at my mom as she snaps our photo on Saturday's ride. Poor Sovey despises being touched but allows affection when I am on his back. He would completely flatten me if I attempted to love him up from the ground. His silent motto is "I love you. Don't touch me!"
This one is of Foggy grazing on Black Friday after our ride. The day was as sunny as Foggy's disposition. I can hug and kiss him without any worry. He is a happy, free spirit full of fun and mischief.
My shadow in this picture cracks me up because I look like a Pilgrim! My winter riding gear is so perfect and warm so I am not complaining one bit but the shadow outline reminds me of the Pilgrim women we had to color in elementary school around this time of year. Oh, what a joyful Black Friday! I am a lucky Pilgrim in the fresh air and sunshine after a great horsey ride!
Finding both of these photos in my phone this evening made me laugh out loud and also reminded me of something Maizie told us on a run recently.
Brian and I run with Maizie on days she has off school. Our family conversations are diverse. We discuss anything that pops in our heads - politics, sports, music, spirituality, school subjects, and philosophy. On one run a few days ago Maizie told us that she's been listening to a song by David Bowie and the lyrics remind her of Brian and me as parents. She started by saying that the song is similar to Crackerbox Palace, but Bowie's lyrics are more to the point.
When we got back to the van she played the song for us. The song title is "Kooks" so, of course, she had our attention. When your 15 year old daughter tells you that a song called Kooks reminds her of you, you sit up and take notice. Click photo above for song.
I don't consider myself a "kook" really at all, but I do think some of the philosophies I share with Brian might be unusual now - or not necessarily popular - YET! But stay tuned...
That is at the heart of what propels me forward in my horse life with this blog and the horse writing I've been doing lately. I feel an urgency to celebrate this style which safely allows the daily rides and hopefully inspires others to find their horsey bliss. Too many times I meet women with a faraway look in their eyes because the horsey love they imagined is not what is happening in reality.
I spent some time talking to "traditional riders" over the holiday and I realized midway through my description of my Thanksgiving morning ride that nothing I am doing with horses is understood or in any way respected. I attempted to share how funny Pie was when a neighbor threw open her upstairs bathroom window, water dripping off her showered hair, to yell "Happy Thanksgiving!" at 8:30 Thursday morning. Pie was determined to figure out which window she was in. I told my listeners of his unwillingness to budge as he studied each window in the rear of their house till he looked up and finally saw her waving. His need to find her was just adorable and something I will remember forever but it sounds like a stupid juvenile story to "serious" riders.
Their own Thanksgiving morning ride was called off because the schooling ring was too frozen and hard.
Oh, I am so grateful to be a kook!
Doesn't sound stupid to me . . . but, wait! I'm a kook too!ReplyDelete
Hilarious Kate! Yes, we are all kooks in this amazing pursuit! You ride, intrepidly as Kacy says, every day - drinking it all in. How lucky we are to enjoy horses this time round, this way!Delete
Count me in.ReplyDelete
I lose people when I try to share delightful tales of Val aiming for the manure cart... true story. (thanks for the kind thoughts juliette :D)
Your Val is the very best with his adorable antics. I couldn't live in the Shimmy Shack - I'm afraid I'd be out with him or have him in with me! He is just precious!Delete
Wish I could be there and help you out with the chores!
I reread this piece several times " I realized midway through my description of my Thanksgiving morning ride that nothing I am doing with horses is understood or in any way respected". I juat couldn't get my head around it - it souds so mean (of them), and narrow minded. Their loss and you have the last laugh of course - no cancelled ride for you!ReplyDelete
Love the David Bowie comparison :). Belated Happy Thanksgiving!
Hi Carol - thanks for the Thanksgiving wishes - does Canada celebrate Thanksgiving? I can't remember!Delete
I don't think my listeners were trying to be mean - in fact, everyone in mainstream equestrian circles seem fairly kind when faced with stories of what I am doing with horses now. They do seem puzzled though, like they don't quite get it - the joy, the challenge, the process. If anything, they feel sorry for me because they think I am missing the point with horses. Funny, because I worry they are missing the point too!
But, I forgot to add that my style of riding now does not garner respect. Most qualitative pursuits don't but I'm ok with that - great rides add up if anyone is counting!Delete
Yes, we celebrate Thanksgiving the second Monday of October.Delete
It was the reference that they had no respect for your riding that made me think they were mean. Glad I interpreted it incorrectly. Reading your post and your comment below made me think about lack of respect for qualitative pursuits. Similarly I've always found there's a lack of respect for intuitive thinking, when I consider it the highest form of thought. Although I love the measurable progression of dressage, I consider it art too and I hope I never get too bogged down in 'measures'. It would ruin the fun AND the riding. This would be an interesting post topic in itself :).
Oh - that's right - sorry - very belated Happy Thanksgiving to you too! With sweet horses and your amazing adventure I know it is Thanksgiving up there every day at Five Fires!!!Delete
You are so right about the lack of respect for intuitive thinking - and its being the highest form of thought. That is the area I am most interested in these days - to me it is the secret space where the intellect crosses over into the spiritual and finally - I am listening! Of course intuition helps us with our daily interactions with other humans, but with horses I am finding that intuitive thought runs the show.
You and Rogo have allowed your journey with backing and dressage to remain a natural flow, a natural progression. Seems like that keeps it in the lovely, happy art realm and out of solely measured territory. I don't believe animals and measures mix well. Especially horses.
And what a post topic it would be! How quantitative equestrian activities can inhibit not only fun, but outcomes. When the quality and flow and art become the focus rather than the obvious measure or milepost, the product is an excellent ride and ironically high points and ribbons and winning.
Wait..so confused?! Not respected? I think that is crazy? Your horses treat you with SUCH high regard and respect in all your rides (I'm sure more some days than other days like normal animals)...I always am envious of your joy with your ponies. Wait, no not envious..DRIVEN by it :) xoxoReplyDelete
lol - I sure didn't intend to open a can of worms with my "respect" comment to Carol. Probably poor word choice at 6:30 am - respect has so many meanings in the horse world! I think my boys respect me - in so far as horse people use that word - they are polite about my space and try very hard to adhere to my asks on the ground and when I am riding.Delete
I was referring to respect in the horse world with other people caught up in quantitative measures - points, awards, medals, ribbons - that type of thing.
Thanks Kristen!!! We are all driven by each other's adventures, aren't we!!!
Kooks? Nah--thoughtful, respectful, and having a lot of fun with your horses.ReplyDelete
John and I must be kooks as well. Yes, we could be perfecting our circling, bending, position, etc., but it all boils down to fun for us and, most importantly, the horses. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Love the "Pilgrim dress"--it was a cold day, wasn't it?
We did have a great Thanksgiving - and yes, it was cold. But, I know that means nothing to you guys...poor old me in Pennsylvania when you really know cold!!!!Delete