Friday, November 07, 2008

Oh, What a Beautiful Morning!

Remember when I posted all those photos of Miles last month? One of them was of him sitting on a horse, but that outing was actually something Casey had planned for my birthday. He told me on my actual birthday, which was a Sunday, that we would be going to our friend Charlie's the next morning and that I would be going horseback riding. It was truly one of the sweetest and most wonderful birthday gifts I could remember receiving. I adore horseback riding, but hardly ever get the chance. The last time I went was at the end of May in 2000. I wanted to get away from everything for a couple of days, so I found a little horse ranch two hours away from my home. I went on a sunset trail ride, slept in a little bunker and left the next day after playing some pool and receiving a fresh garden tomato from one of the owners. That's an experience I will never forget. There's much more to it than what I just said...hard to get into all of it in one blog post though.

Anyway, back to the present day...Charlie let me get used to Cricket, the horse I would be riding, while he saddled up Doc, his horse (probably the tallest horse I've ever seen in person). I was able to ride Cricket inside a fence, even move her through some barrels. I felt pretty comfortable, but there is always going to be a little bit of the unknown with a large animal. I was in control, but was I really in control? Soon enough, Charlie and I were saying goodbye to Miles and Casey as we rode off through the trees.

I'll never be able to quite put into words how incredible that experience was. We moved through so many different types of land in under an hour: grass fields, thick wooded areas, clover fields...and this was mid-morning, so the light coming through the trees and shining on the water made everything seem incredibly surreal. Charlie and I were able to ride and have good conversation for part of the time, but as we moved through the woods and were single file, we took that time to just be silent and enjoy the moment. I really didn't see it coming, but the experience was so beautiful that I felt my eyes welling up at one point. It was just an overwhelming feeling that couldn't be described -- the beauty of the scenery combined with the beauty of the gift...well, it might sound a little silly to some, but I'm sharing it nonetheless because that is what it was for me.

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