Where has time gone? Ten years ago my mother woke me up and told me World War III might be starting, i will remember that day the rest of my life, watching the Twin towers fall to the ground. As a proud New Zealander, that was born in America, and holds an American passport, i was horrified that my birth country was being attacked. Five years later and i had finished school and was about to start my equestrian career, the world was also a slightly different place. we knew about terrorism, and there was now polarized opinions in my quiet little country about America and the middle east. Two years ago, i was riding in Germany, the horse riding equivalent of going to university, and about as opposite as you can get from the way we do things here. Fast forward even more and a year and a half ago, two little scraggly wild ponies arrived and another journey started. So where are we today??
Its a recession, horses are not selling, and the equine industry is struggling, yet i am busier than i ever have been, I'm turning down horses to ride, working harder than ever, more horses than ever, and the horse i wasn't planing to sell, has sold on gone on to be the most fantastic of all. Matai the ex wild stallion, is doing fantastically in his new home. I keep getting regular updates, She has been riding everywhere, leading her daughters pony off him, and has enjoyed him more than any other horse she has ever owned! I have seen photos of him on her Facebook page, hes gleaming with a beautiful pulled mane and looking stunning, obviously thriving in his new environment. From the wild, to my house, and now on to be the perfect family pony, he takes everything in his stride.
The wild mare, is finally getting some work. Today, i got around to putting a saddle on and riding her for the first time. She too took it all in her stride, no bucking, bolting or broncing. I have free jumped her over winter, and with that big butt of hers and snappy jumping style she looks well on her way to becoming a super little jumping horse. Bring on the jumping season, cannot wait for the comments when i arrive with my 17hh warmblood and my 15hh wild horse.
Sonny, the shy little foal born last spring, i now a strapping young man. He has been weaned, and went to live with Matai. When Matai sold, it was like weaning all over again, he cried for days for the wild stallion that looked after him, that shared a stable together at night and even ate out of the same bowl. Yet now he has taken over the roll of caregiver. Two weeks ago, i picked up an 11hh pinto mare with her four month old foal that was already bigger than her. there were a million things wrong with the situation i got these horses from, but that is another story. The foal badly needed some extra nutrition, that she couldn't get from her mother, she also needed a slightly better role model. So now Sonny is her special friend, as the stallion cared for him he now looks after this pint sized fluff ball, teaching her that humans are friends, hanging out with her in the paddock, and at night the stable he used to share with Matai, he now shares with the foal. When i snuck up to check on them the first night, i found Sonny lying in the hay, with the tiny foal curled between his legs fast asleep. I Don't think i have ever seen anything so sweet, this in horses is a rare and special sight.
You never know where you will be in the future, how the world will change, what forks in the road you will follow, what you will learn on the journey. I know with horses i have had my share of highs and lows, bumps in the road and educational experiences. I look back at 10 years to the day that really did change the world, and cant believe where i am now. I look back at the scrawny horses that arrived in 2010 and cant believe where they gone, how much they have changed, all i have learned and all i keep learning.