“Horses must be the smartest, most understanding, forgiving and patient creatures alive today.”
What an obvious conclusion seeing how no less than three dozen horses were being ridden by children ten and under.
It was a Saturday morning barrel race nearly an hour before starting time and horseback riders jotted the showgrounds everywhere.
Heavy coats, hoods, gloves and red checks, the young riders on their mounts were trotting around in groups of a half dozen more less.
Hooping, hollering, grinning from ear to ear, some even unconsciously spurring and flopping their reins, inclement weather was no concern.
Unaware the scary feeling when a horse runs off or shies from a blowing paper cup, these riders were nonchalant.
Somehow, someway, instinctive nurturing whatever it is the horses never gave their riders any reason to worry.
Perhaps just as difficult to understand dads and moms of the cowboys and cowgirls were paying no attention to their children.
Most had not a clue where the obviously competent riders and dependable horses were or what they were doing. Other than knowing they were having a good time riding their horses with friends.
There was obvious mutual trust of the horses among the tykes, their family and most everyone around.
Now don’t be misled, these horses were not old fragile lazy worn out retirees. Although several ponies were among the mounts, they weren’t little shaggy scrawny deadheads or cold jawed independent aggravations either.
All of the mounts regardless of size were nice looking, athletic, sound, ears perked, and bright eyed ready to go.
Yes, the horses were well broke and had been there and done that. Each was eager to please turning readily with one-hand rein and especially important stopping upon their little rider’s knowledgeable command.
Add to the equation, many of the young well mounted contestants recorded the fastest barrel racing times of the day.
True, most of the horses knew their arena job well. The cowpokes just had to hang on for dear life and not mess up their mounts.
Of nearly 100 horses running throughout the morning, several of the pint-sized riders beat adult times.
All things considered, what could be better for youth today than riding horses with friends?
Reminded of Genesis 50:20: “You have nothing to fear. I’ll take care of you and your children.”