By Laura Crum
First of all, I wanted to let you all know that I'm not the only writer left on this blog. My fellow authors have had some health problems--themselves, their family, their horses (and I hope your mare is doing well, Jami)and/or they are very busy right now and unable to post. As a group, we've all agreed that we need to prioritize the important things (family, health, horses...etc) over writing blog posts. So, currently I'm holding down the fort. But I'm sure the others will be back as they feel able. Anyway, today I wanted to share a story about something I'm thankful for, in honor of Thanksgiving.
Awhile ago I wrote a post about a horse named Harley—a good team roping horse who suffered a suspensory tear, and after two years of rehab and two surgeries was still not sound enough to be a rope horse. Harley was pasture sound, however, and my uncle, who owned him, wanted to find him an appropriate home. A friend of mine, who had loved horses in her youth but hadn’t ridden for years, was interested in taking Harley. Though she had some land, she didn’t have a horse corral, merely a pen where she kept her goats. She really didn’t know a lot about horses, and I was torn over whether it was a good choice to give her this fairly high-powered, though well broke, horse. Some of you wrote in, and most said I should give it a try. This was my feeling, too, so I went over to my friend’s home, helped her make a plan for horsekeeping, and several weeks later my uncle delivered Harley. So here’s the follow up.
My friend’s husband built her a nice corral and shed for the horse. My friend’s twenty year old son took a big interest in the project. Between them, this family groomed and handwalked and grazed Harley every day. Last week the friend reported to me that Harley looked sound to them, but would I come see. I went over there last Weds and Harley did indeed look servicably sound. Trotted in a straight line on hard ground, he didn’t bob. The family asked if he was sound enough to ride. I told them yes, he was plenty sound enough to be walked and trotted lightly. The son climbed on the horse bareback, with a halter, and walked him around, and though Harley was reasonably cooperative, it was clear that the horse had a lot of life, and it would be better to ride him with a saddle and bridle.
I found an old saddle that they could buy cheap, and loaned them a bridle and saddle pad. On Saturday, I brought the gear, and a friend of mine who used to rope on the horse, over to their house, and Mark (the friend) gave them a first lesson. Harley did great. My friend’s son rode him very successfully. I think they’re off to a good start as a partnership. Harley looks happy and in good flesh. He’s come back to riding horse soundness. And he’s such a nice horse. I was really tickled.
So here’s a happy story for the day before Thanksgiving. I am so grateful that I was able to put Harley and this family together. They are enjoying and benefiting each other, and to think that Harley was about to be put down if a home couldn’t be found(!) What a waste that would have been. It is just so much fun when we are able to facilitate something like this. I wanted to share this story and thank those of you who advised me to give this situation a chance. And if anybody else has a happy ending story to share, I’d love to hear it. Happy Thanksgiving!--Laura