December 28th, 2010

By: lmcphoto

Dec 28 2010

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Category: Uncategorized

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Aperture:f/5.6
Focal Length:50mm
ISO:800
Shutter:1/250 sec
Camera:Canon EOS 7D

This should be one of the easiest posts I’ve ever written–but I think it might prove to be rather difficult. Today my Mom and I went down to Richmond for a visit to the art museum. Those photos will come later. On the way back from the museum we stopped at Libby’s house. Libby ran the barn at my summer camp for years. I’d say she taught me quite a bit about riding and about horses, but that could pass for the understatement of the year. Libby didn’t just teach me about riding and horses, she taught me courage, determination, and compassion, and happened to do so through horses. I’ve been lucky to have had two women like this in my life, and though they both have passed away, I hope to follow in their footsteps one day.

One of the best things Libby ever did for me was to give me a “project horse:” Sassy Spot. Sassy Spot was, for camp at least, a green horse. A three or four year old baby who knew next to nothing. She was sweet and beautiful, and a little crazy. I worked with Sassy Spot my last year as a camper, and for a few summers following that as a counselor. I got tossed a few times (who drives a tractor dragging a tree trunk past a green horse and young rider?) and we spent many a summer horse show riding in circles in the middle of the ring–but we learned a heck of a lot from each other. And the summer I was first able to get on Sass from the upper barn (on a hillside) and lead trail ride on her in the early morning, even cantering her through the woods at the head of the line of campers and counselors, I felt like I had conquered the world.

I’ll never know what shifted. Why she suddenly wouldn’t let anybody but me get on her, and why then, by the next summer, even I couldn’t do it anymore. One leg over and she’d be up in the air. Camp never sold her, she went to live permanently at Libby’s house. And now, even though she has been unrideable for years, Sassy Spot still lives there.

So today I got to visit my much loved horse. One of my campers keeps a camp pony there over the summer, and she has made friends with Sassy Spot, who seems to be slowly becoming sane again. They say somebody might try to ride her this spring. Hopefully this is not the last you’ll hear about her–if I could take that horse home I would. Maybe someday…

In the meantime I’m grateful to know she is loved and taken care of–especially by the camp girls who I love and trust (thank you, Emma!). And I am so happy that I got to go spend even that short time visiting with her, and with the camp girls who were there too! How lucky am I today?

I promise my next post will be much shorter. Today meant a lot to me, and I had to ramble a bit.

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