This week has been pretty crappy, which is why the last two posts have been blah. There's no other word for them, really, so I'll just call them what they are!
It all started last week, actually, when I found out that this beauty was for sale.
His name is Bikr (pronounced "Biker") and he's a four-year-old quarter horse/arab cross. In the horse world, that's nothing remotely special, but I've had my eye on him since he was born.
When I started taking lessons, there was always one horse that nobody ever wanted to be "stuck" with: Her name was Treat, and even though she was supposed to be fully mature at the time, her brain was reputed to be the size of a pea.
Or something even smaller.
I've always been a sucker for the underdog (and a sucker for punishment!) - so I decided to make Treat my project.
She was known around the barn as "Crazy Treat". She kicked. She bit. I still have a scar on my left wrist from the time she grabbed my wrist when I was trying to pull the bridle over her ears - I couldn't get her to open her mouth so I just stood there with my arm between her teeth for ten minutes or so until my coach heard me yelling for help!
She spooked at absolutely everything. It didn't matter that she had lived in the same barn her entire life and had seen the same arena every single day: She could still decide that there was a monster in there today and nothing anybody did could convince her otherwise. She picked a new Corner of Death every time I sat in the saddle.
She could walk through water calmly one day and bolt through it the next.
But she taught me how to ride.
Treat made me work for everything. There was no sitting back and relaxing. If I wasn't two steps ahead of her at all times, I would eat dirt. That's just the way it was.
She ran away with me at shows more than once. We were excused from classes more than once. But when we did win (and we did!!!) - it was worth so much more.
Treat has always had a special place in my heart. Even when I started riding and showing Ariel, Treat was always my second favourite. If I could have afforded two horses, I would have bought her in a heartbeat!
Bikr is her only son.
My former coach, Cindy, owns Treat, and I've been following Bikr's life on Facebook for the past four years. Cindy gave him to her daughter-in-law and I didn't think he would ever be for sale, but now that Cindy's downsizing - well, he's up for grabs.
Was up for grabs.
Nathan and I talked.
And talked and talked and talked.
He said if I could find the money in our budget, we could get a horse.
I found the money.
But then Nathan thought that maybe it would be better to do the "responsible thing" and pay off the car instead.
I love my husband but sometimes I hate that he's so logical, so practical, and so gosh darn responsible.
When we lost Ariel, I remember telling Nathan that if we didn't buy another horse right away, we never would. There's always something else to do with that money. The car. A house.
A bigger car. A bigger house.
And on it goes …
I know paying off the loan is the right thing to do. We have the money, and once it's paid off, the only debt we'll have is our mortgage.
I know there will be a better time.
I know there will be other horses.
But still ...
Nathan's not a horse person, so he doesn't really get it. Horses aren't a hobby. They're not a "pastime". Horses are a lifestyle - and I feel like I've lost myself in a world without them.