Another tack store is closing. This one is the nearest to us, well known and respected in the area. In a region once teeming with tack stores, it is sad to think that we will soon be down to one. Even that one is struggling under the weight of the new digital marketplace, where you can buy anything you want from anywhere you want. I see a time coming, not far in the future, when there will be no tack stores, except possibly in the richest areas, catering to the richest clients. “Would that be so bad?”, you might ask. Perhaps not, for those who never enjoyed the benefits of a great tack store – to my mind, it will be a great loss to us all.
Between the belated rainy season, and whatever horrid bug my coworker so generously shared, it has been many weeks since I was in a saddle. This long weekend (our college had Friday off for staff to get a spring break) was timed right to get back in the groove with the horses!
A video popped up on Facebook depicting a “horse training” demonstration by a world famous horseman. The friend who posted suggested that people write to the organization to voice their displeasure. The organization is not in my country, so I’m sure my voice would have no impact – but the video presents some very serious issues. So, at the risk of offending fans of this horseman, and being told that I don’t know the situation (though it’s pretty clear), I have decided to share that video here, and offer not only my take on it, but an alternative by another well known horseman. This will take a little time, so get comfy.
In between rain storms, I’ve been trying to civilize Noble. He comes from a line known to be difficult to train, and I can see where that reputation might come from. However, it is difficult in a way that I am used to, after more than forty years of living with Appaloosas. In a word, he is smart and willing to use it to his advantage. Compliant will never be a word you can apply to my Noble! Yet, he adores getting attention, and in recent months has been asking more and more that he get the attention the “working” horses get. However, a recent event illustrates just what I’m up against – and left my mother and I rolling in the barn aisle!
When I first started trying to find my way back into the equestrian world, and struggled with how much it had changed (and not for the better), I was lucky to find Epona.tv. The two journalists who founded it had become tired of the same old celebrity promotion style of equestrian journalism, and set out to do something different – and they succeeded.
Inclement weather and a crisis at work have been a roadblock to working with the horses in the last couple of weeks. They get hugs and scratches from me, during evening chores – and seem happy to see me on those occasions – but that has been the bulk of my interactions. So, it is probably no wonder that while I was contemplating the leadership crisis I’m struggling with, my mind immediately wandered to equine metaphors for the situation. I thought that sharing those might be entertaining (and perhaps a little enlightening) for you, and therapeutic for me!