Trudy Andrew | Canadian Author

Travel Tails

A Lovely day for a Ride

Blazing along a beach or trail can be fun, yet sometimes, a lovely meander about, is perfect as well. We rode away from the stable with not a clue as to where we were going, or what we might see, and that was perfectly okay. Sightseeing can be fun. Sightseeing from horseback is even better.
We were on very nice horses. I was on Arnie, the grey gelding. Sweetpea’s mount was a very cute Skewbald that was a bit green. Sweetpea actually enjoys a horse with a bit of spunk. To her way of thinking, there’s little better, than an interesting ride. The little gelding was very sweet, very well-behaved and just a wee bit of a doddler. He didn’t have much training, yet didn’t buck or fuss in any way. What he did do was fall behind then rush forward to catch up. He did this over and over again, much to the girlchild’s amusement. Of course, she giggled like crazy whenever it happened. Of course, she rarely had the reins in hand when it happened either. She was far too busy taking pictures. When we looked at the photos of that ride much later, we chuckled all over again. It was super easy to tell, whenever there was a ‘catch up’ rush. The photos would be ever so nice. There’d be shots of scenery and horses, then blurry shots of mane and ground, as the little horse suddenly ran to catch up to his buddies.
The route took us alongside an ancient wall of stone that had been standing for hundreds of years. Sadly, a good deal of it had been and was still being lost to developers who thought more of building new houses, than respecting the past. To sweetpea and I, such a wall was a thing of wonder, something to be marvelled at. Sadly, we often found that such things weren’t given much thought. I suppose it could be because, they see it all the time and we don’t. Canada has history, but it’s very different from what we saw in Europe. If I had a wall that was hundreds upon hundreds of years old, possibly thousands and thousands of years old, crossing my land, I’d want to keep it. My imagination easily envisioned all sorts of things, all sorts of people and animals that had travelled alongside it, the people who had built it, all sorts of battles and wars. If I was in charge, the wall would remain and there’d be all sorts of trouble, if anyone damaged it. Alas, I wasn’t and am not in charge.
It was the sort of ride where we could chat with Vicki our guide, while enjoying all the area had to offer. We even did something I could never imagine doing back home, we entered the backside of a long field housing an adorable pony. Vicki dismounted to open the gate and let us all in, closed it behind us, remounted then off we went once again. Well, the pony thought having three horses in its pasture was simply great. It wasn’t at all interested in Arnie or Vicki’s horse. She was however, in love with the horse the girlchild was riding. It was a bit adorable, how it pranced and bucked in circles around them. The pony was so excited, so thrilled to have a friend, or a potential friend that we both felt a bit sad for the little critter when we reached the other end, and left the pen. Horses and ponies of course, are herd animals by nature. They want company. They want to have another equine to hang around with. They don’t want to live alone. Sadly, this little one was an only child. I was surprised that we had entered and crossed a pasture with a loose pony in it, and had to ask Vicki if this was a common thing. She said that the pony had come from the stables we’d started out from, and the woman who owned the pony and land, had given them permission to cross. It was all very strange to us, yet apparently was perfectly normal to them.
We left the lonely pony behind and rode out onto what appeared to be a newly paved road. Having worked in construction for decades, I noticed out loud that it appeared to be freshly asphalted. My observation definitely got a response from Vicki. Like us, she wasn’t a fan. We’d noticed that there weren’t very many cobble streets around, and that was because they were being paved over. People in their low slung, fancy sports cars didn’t like bobbling over cobbles. They preferred the smooth ride asphalt provided. Vicki particularly disliked how the asphalt would get soft and sticky when the sun came out and the day warmed up a little. It would pull the shoes, right off horse’s hooves. I could see that as being a huge pain.
We rode through the quaint village, past pretty yards and lovely homes. I noticed that there was an older couple tending their beautiful yard and gardens. I believe that it’s important to be nice, to say something nice whenever the opportunity presents itself. Reining in Arnie, I spoke up, “You have a beautiful yard. The flowers are incredible.”
It was clearly obvious by the surprised expressions on their faces that they hadn’t expected a complete stranger on a horse, to say such a thing.
“Oh,” the man and woman straightened up and smiled, “thank yeh. ’Tis a good deal of work though … probably more than ’tis worth at times.”
“It’s definitely worth it,” I flashed them a broad smile, “it’s incredibly beautiful, you should both be very proud of it. Have a good day.”
“Ay,” they smiled back, “and yerselves as well, thank yeh.”
We rode on, me knowing that I’d both complimented and cheered the couple, while telling the complete truth. I was pretty sure I’d also given them something to tell their friends over tea. All in all, it was a good day that was now even better.

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About Trudy Andrew

Trudy Andrew lives on a small farm just east of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she enjoys her Morgan horses. A dreamer since she was a child, its no surprise to those who know her well that her imagination would find an outlet in writing, as it has in the past through artwork.
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 Oakbank, MB