I spent years seeing the world between the ears of a horse. It was my job. It was meaningful, terrific work… but did I realize it and appreciate it then?
Those were good years. I remember well the feel of each horse, their personality, their work ethic, the camaraderie: Old Lad was “bomb proof” but you’re gonna need your spurs. Pie was cooperative, willing and nimble, until he got daydreaming, then sometimes he’d stumble and shock me out of my daydreaming. Mayfield…no spurs needed, smooth at a gallop, high strung and eager. Checking cattle in the high summer ranges of Utah, herding cattle across the sage brush lower country and riding across Grass Valley with snow blowing sideways to gather up some straggling cows and calves – I dreamed of “more” so I started into business college.
As a young Father, Zach (my son) would ride in the saddle with me. Now another young son sits on my lap as I type this. Life has a way of delivering what it is we think about and seek out. I suppose that is why I am doing what I am doing today, and gratefully so – I love my work and my life.
Recently, Zach I had an opportunity to get back in the saddle again. That old feeling of cold leather, the smells, the girth of the animal, the power you know is under you, the partnership and sometimes uncertainty… all of those familiar feelings flooded in. My horse was appropriately named, “Bullet” and I wondered, if she lived up to her name would those unused skills resurface well enough, fast enough? In an instant I realized how much I enjoyed my time as a cowboy and that I likely should have lived in the moment more, while I was doing it. What’s not to love about being at 10,000 ft., on a terrific horse, often in solitude? I have fond memories.
Today my work is different and I have traded the saddle for a 30,000 ft. airplane seat. I am learning to love whatever stage of life I am in.
I have the love, I have the pasture, I have the time. I need a horse…