Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Maddy and her horse-crazy little friend Sami had their first horseback riding lesson Saturday. An old friend from our horse ownership days let the freckle-faced midgets ride Trigger, a 25-year-old Palomino from a ranch in western Nebraska. He’s a blond, but he’s calm and good. He has been living the life of Riley in a manicured pasture on an estate northwest of town, with pedigreed horses worth 50 times as much.

In the beginning, they stood in awe of the tall horse. They made tentative, cautious little circles with their curry brushes, watching his ears the whole time as he flicked them around, wondering what the heck was going on. Gradually, though, they “cowgirled up,” and rode around and around the arena on their new best friend, beaming so brightly there was no need for electrical lighting.

To us, he looked like a dead-broke old quarter horse, barely moving, shuffling along obediently with the glue factory right around the corner. To them, though, he was a wild stallion on the Arabian peninsula, mane and tail whipping spectacularly as he galloped gallantly and raced the wind.

We didn’t have the heart to tell them that THEIR ponytails were moving a lot more than HIS.

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