(APADO = a post a day; october. I’m trying to post once a day for a month and it’s kind of killing me, but I’m doing alright. *wipes brow*)
(I really, really, really need to get batteries for my camera so I can take some photos for blog posts instead of relying on my backlog.)
(and this post is kinda personal so if that’s not your thing then that’s okay ^w^)
I think it’s public knowledge that I love horseback riding. I’ve been doing it for three years now and I feel like it’s going to be a part of me for the rest of my life.
Though I had loved horses for all my life, I didn’t sit on a horse until I was 12, when I saved up all my money and bought a semester of riding lessons. They weren’t exactly as I’d imagined, but they weren’t too far off. I’d say the best thing I learned was how to groom a horse. I had no idea how much I’d use it later.
There was a little show at the end of them – just to show off to our parents what we’d learned. I placed last in all the classes, but I had fun.
All my ribbons said “participant”. As in “good try!”
Of course, I didn’t really care that much about the ribbons. (Honestly, I was just glad I had won anything.) What I did care about, however, was how expensive the lessons were.
I spent that summer still obsessed with horses (as usual), wondering what I should do. I could either get rich or get creative.
I chose to get creative.
That fall, I started helping out at a broodmare farm. I groomed horses, mucked out stalls, and did whatever I needed to do. And it was here, at Willow Tree Farm, that I found out that I love to ride bareback.
There wasn’t, though, enough to do at Willow to justify my riding there – I didn’t have enough experience to do what really needed to be done. Even though I didn’t want to leave, I unofficially started looking for another place. But the chilly evenings spent cleaning tack or riding bareback on their old jumping mare will always be a special time in my life.
I found Skyline Farm at the beginning of last year. It’s a stable that specializes in riding lessons for all ages. Being the dork I am, I wrote a letter asking if I could trade barnwork for riding lessons, and eventually started assisting the trainers during the kids’ lessons. It’s actually a really fun job. And I get paid in – oh yes – riding lessons.
I really have to thank my trainers at Skyline for getting me to the place I am in my riding skill today. When I came, I hadn’t even trotted yet. Now I’m jumping and cantering and stuff.
I even competed in a small show they had there (and actually won first place!)
But what’s really made Skyline good for me is all the ground experience I’m getting. I’ve learned so much more through helping out with lessons than if I were just taking them myself.
Honestly, I don’t know what my horse future has in store for me. But I’m just going to keep in stride with it, to use a horse term. Hehe.
If it’s anything like how things have been so far, I don’t think I’ll ever be bored.
Sayonara for now,