Friday, February 14, 2014

Good Old Days Series: Mac


I've decided that, since it is still quite bitterly cold outside and there will be no "real" writing on Suzie for a while until the snow melts, I'd jot down the history of all the horses who have left a large impact in my life. In this "series" I will first and foremost start with "Mac".

Mac, was one of the first horses I truly "leased". His owner, Vickey, mostly had him as a trail horse and would occasionally dabble into the schooling show scene. When my lesson horse grew old/ill, Vickey offered up Mac for me to ride, as she knows my instructor quite well. I started riding him way back in 2007. He was definitely a sure-footed, steady-eddie type of guy and he most certainly was a "old grump" who only ever really wanted to get his own way. He was about 15.2 hands high, and was a beautiful! palomino gelding with the most handsome blaze on his face.

He was the perfect "first horse" a girl could ask for, and his owner was more than willing to let me take over the reins. I rode him for three years and I learnt so much about not only riding a rather stubborn horse, but also about friendship, hardship and commitment. He was an old guy who's legs would creak and groan, but he'd try his heart out for me anyways. I mean, I was a crazy teenager who wanted to do nothing more than jump! Mac's 19 year old self did just that for me, despite being annoyed we weren't hitting the trails instead! And his only true passion was eating - trust me, if I was out trail riding, at 5PM on the dot he'd be heading back home whether or not I liked it! When we first started working together, I wasn't too keen on him, as he was a lot more difficult (for me!) than any horse I'd ever ridden before. He was definitely a Quarter Horse, in the aspect that he was a thinker - if he thought long and hard enough, he could find a way to get out of doing something. He was quite the challenge for me, but reliable and always safe!

I took some pretty hilarious falls off of him - one of which included me trotting him down a dirt road bareback and being bounced right off! Mac continued trotting back home and thankfully, the friend that was with me caught him. And there were countless falls I encountered from "jumping" little cross rails and just generally being a goof. And interestingly enough, these are all memories I will cherish. He was a Western pony who put his heart and soul into everything he did for me and the devastation that ripped through me when I was notified he passed was gut-wrenching.

Mac is on the left hand side. Cheyenne is on the right

I won't go into the details, but his loss impacted me far more than words will ever convey. After all, I was just a naïve kid who figured he was going to live forever. I did, however, get a tattoo of him (and another horse who I will mention later) on my ankle so that he will be on every ride I go on from now on. There will never be another horse as trustworthy, down to earth, kind and forgiving as Mac.

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