The Teen Years
The last day of 6th grade, and just a couple of days before my 13th birthday, my family moved from a tiny 2 bedroom home in the suburbs to a nice big country home. Even though I was going to be starting junior high in the fall knowing no one I was still excited about moving to the country!
A couple of days after we moved in, 2 girls came to our front door. My mom looked out and made me answer the door, figuring it was for me. :) Two girls introduced themselves as Cindy and Lisa. First they asked me if I played with dolls. Of course not, I said, as I held the door so they couldn't come in and see my dolls in the family room behind me, lol! They they asked me how old I was and what grade I was going into. All three of us were just months apart in age, and would be starting at the newly built junior high in the fall. Then they asked me if I liked horses, my eyes must have lit up as I answered yes, and when they told me that they both had horses, I probably jumped for joy! Cindy had a sweet little Arabian named Ali, and Lisa had a Tennessee Walker. Since it was summer both girls were keeping them in their backyards... right down the road! I can't remember how long it took me to walk down and see them, but I bet it wasn't long! I do remember that Ali had a fenced in small pasture and run in shed, and for some reason Lisa's horse was staked out every day, and then put in a shed at night. We used to ride bareback and double a lot, but didn't go too far that summer, mostly just in the neighborhood.
By the time winter set in, both horses had been moved to a stable that was 5 minutes from our school. We spent many, many hours there. On weekends and school holidays we would get dropped off early in the morning, with our lunches and be there all day. I learned everything to do with taking care of a horse- except picking out hooves, for some reason. We rode, I can remember riding my own horse, but don't know if it was a horse that needed exercise or if I paid for it....I loved riding in the snow that winter. At some point that fall I started taking English lessons. By spring we were getting ready for shows at the state fairgrounds every weekend with Cindy(Lisa didn't show), and spent hours there too! I believe it was at the end of that summer, that Lisa and her family moved to a different state. I was devastated, but Cindy even more so, because they had been best friends for years. After Lisa left, Cindy encouraged me to ask my parents for horse. The two of us made many phone calls, etc. looking for just the perfect horse. It never crossed my mind to look for anything other than a pinto as that was my favorite breed.(It still is). Finally, we found him. My mother took the 2 of us over to see him. First Cindy rode him, he did great. Then I rode him, and for some reason that I can't recall, I was on him bareback. All went well, he moved into a trot, and then a big gust of wind came up, started blowing the dirt around, and next thing I knew I was flat on my back on the ground! I was fine, if a little embarrassed, the horse stayed right there next to me, but I didn't get that horse. My parents told me that they thought I would take care of it for awhile, and then lose interest. In reality I think my mom saw me fall off, realize that I could maybe just possibly get hurt riding, and she and my dad decided they were not going to see that happen! Of course, looking back on it, I know I would never have lost interest in a horse of my own, and now my parents don't seem to quite remember why I never had my horse! Time changes memories, and I don't believe my mom even remembers me falling off that horse, lol! She now says she doesn't remember why I didn't get a horse, as we had plenty of room for a small barn and pasture!
The inevitable happened though. Without a horse of my own, Cindy and I drifted apart. She still rides and shows, and wins ribbons, and has owned horses her whole life. After that I went back to trail riding occasionally down the road from where I lived. That was a not very safe place. I can remember a group of us used to go. The owner would saddle up 8 or 10 horses, and just let us go for as long as we wanted. I believe it cost $5.00. There were no lessons first for my friends, I can remember he hollered at us once because the boys were yelling, but other than that, no supervision.
I moved on to other interests, but tried to get back into riding shortly after I was married. My husband though, was not into horses, and I was so into him at the time, I didn't want to ride without him! So, I didn't.
Next up- The reason I remembered my love for horses, and when I started thinking about it again!