In case you're wondering who's at the end of the trailer, it's me. NIC. Bonnie is my partner but she's been under the weather so I trotted in to help. After all I spend a lot of time standing at the end of the trailer. That's because I'm a TRAIL HORSE and darn proud of it because I WORK at being a trail horse.
Some folks don't consider us trail horses as working horses but let me tell you, WE work!! My partner, Bonnie, and I have covered some of the most beautiful trails and country in this Nation. Thousands of miles over the years. We've crossed rivers. Gone down mountains on trails of granite. Plowed through snow. Rain....there's been a few hairy moments and a couple slides but I've always gotten Bonnie back safely and in one piece. On every trail ride, my partner has put her life in the saddle on me and my job is to get her there and back safely -- to the end of the trailer!
With all of us horses, we try our best to please our partners. Sure, some of us are a little on the more, ah, how do I put this nicely, "hard headed" side. Even demanding but if partners would just think about it, it's not that we're being 'hard headed' it's just that for every reaction we have there's been a cause that started the 'hard headedness".
We horses don't say much. We react and sometimes those reactions are misunderstood. Why won't Bell cross water? Because when her first partner put her into a deep pond to cross, Bell couldn't get up the other side! Now, she hates water and balks when having to cross through. Lady Bug hates to be bitted up. Why? She had a bit that didn't fit in width shoved in her mouth, clank her teeth and rubbed sore spots on the insides of her mouth. Her partner never checked Bug's mouth inside and out to make sure the bit fit!
It's not that I know it all......I'm a horse. My specialties are trails and horsecamping. But I'm lucky. My partner takes TIME with me. Regardless if it's when she's sitting on a bucket in the arena, scratching my ears in the paddock, getting back from a trail ride or me just following my partner around the corral, she talks to me, pets me and checks me out. If hair is ruffled on my back, partner checks it to make sure it's not the beginning of a bug bite or a scratch spot from rubbing on tree branches. (Sometimes I ruffle the hair by rubbing on a low branch just to get her to scratch my back!) We've got good body language because we respect each other. Take time to figure things out. And have spend time together doing nothing but plodding down trails!
Nic (and Bonnie)