I have loved horses ever since I knew what a horse was. Maybe 5 years old, maybe younger. I didn't grow up in a horsey family so I didn't actually get a live horse until I was about 17. Until then I collected Breyers and pretended they were real.
My thing is trail riding. I love nature and have a very strong desire to spend as much time out in nature as I can. Kind of like the book "The Call of the Wild" where the dog Buck is drawn to go out and live with the wolves? I feel "the call of the wild" to be out in the woods and see the animals and enjoy the clouds and see God's beauty. I actually get depressed if I can't ride. And cranky! Sometimes I don't even realize what is wrong. Why am I so down? And then I realize it, oh yeah, I haven't ridden for a week!
So it's very much about being out in nature and spending time with my best friend (my horse!). Kind of like taking a stroll with your dog, only bigger and better! I know it sounds corny to many horse people, but I want my horse to be my best friend and trail buddy.
When I ended up re-homing my first foal (at 8 years of age) because he was too much horse for me and I had riding anxiety from riding out his spooks, I contemplated what would happen if my current trail horse went lame or died. Would I ever be able to find another horse to trust? What if I didn't? Could I get the same feeling hiking or with a bicycle? I even sat on a bicycle at the store......I hadn't been on one in probably 30 years. It felt so weird! The appeal of the bicycle is that I could get trail time every day if I wanted and not feel like I am overworking my horse (I like to give her a day between rides if I can) and bicycles don't eat and they are cheap, so I could get one for under $200 and it could sit in the garage for months if I didn't use it. But it just didn't feel like "home" so I didn't buy one. I will keep on with my one lovely horse and hope she holds up and pray that if I ever need another to come along, I can find a good one.
Am I the only one that feels afraid that if the loose their main mount they may never find another one? I know logically that doesn't make sense, but I do tend to feel that way. That horses will go up in price and I won't be able to afford one, or I won't be able to find a safe horse or a sound horse.
If I ever get to where I can't ride I would still love to have one as a pet, just to love on. But then I also think that if I'm not able bodied enough to ride, I will probably not be able bodied enough to take care of a horse either. Because compared to moving hay and picking up manure, riding is the easy part! But I just am in awe of horses and always have been. But I also have a strong desire to be out in nature. So love of horses + strong desire to be out in nature = trail riding.