My Pie

September 16, 2012
The lead rope slapped against my leg as Pie trailed behind me, trying to sneak a bite of grass. A quick tug and warning remark and his head shot up in indignation, another remark when we get to the gate and he stands still while I wiggle the gate open. One last remark and he walks through the gate, huffing while I make him wait for me to close the gate again.
He knickers when I rub his forehead and tell him he’s a good boy. I slip the halter off and he shakes his big head, which makes his ears, flop all around, before wandering a couple of steps to grab some grass. I wander over to the other side of the paddock, watching the girls in the arena practice over a set of cavaletti’s, jump, canter, jump, canter, and back again, they’ve got a rhythm going.
A nudge against my shoulder and I turn around, surprised to find myself looking into Pie’s soft brown eyes. He looks at me calmly and I wonder what he wants.
“ Shoo, boy, go and enjoy yourself, we are done for the day”, but he just looks at me and doesn’t bat an eyelash. I take a step away, he doesn’t even move, but one more step, and he moves to follow.
“What are you up to Pie?”
I walk across the field just to see if he’ll follow, but not really expecting him to. I don’t look back, but I hear the quiet thud of hooves.
“Silly boy, gonna follow me huh?”
So I stop and turn around. He comes to a stop in front of me and I reach out to rub his cheek. He snorts and drops his head to eat some grass at his feet. Oh, well guess that game is done, might as well head back to the barn.
So I turn and walk to the gate, but a second later I hear those hooves following me again. I laugh and turn back.
“Pie what am I gonna do with you huh?”
He looks at me with those big brown eyes and waits for me to understand, understand that he’s not going anywhere. I’m shocked, never had a horse show any sort of attachment to me. But then a smile, a really big smile, breaks out. Cuase this is what horseback riding is all about. Sure there’s the jumps and the speed and the adrenaline. Not gonna lie, that’s all nice, exciting and fun. But the best thing by far is when you connect with a horse. They won’t leave you or judge you and that’s an amazing thing.
So I sit on the fence and watch the girls riding over the jumps. And Pie stands beside me eating the grass and every once in a while he brings his head up. He nudges my shoulder to make sure I’m there and I rub his nose and know that I never want to leave.

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