February 22, 2009

Building Trust

We have hard working, horse loving friends living nearby. I love to stand on the hill of their small farm and watch the horses graze. Some are boarded, some family and they come in all sizes and types. Raised in farming and ranching country in CA, I grew up seeing and occasionally riding bigger horses. Conversely miniature horses are new to me and its taken awhile to get my head wrapped around them. I think it's because they remind me of toys come to life. They have been fun to get to know at the farm. 

The horses pictured above fall into the medium category, with the smaller just two weeks old at the time of this photograph. On the spring day this was taken I tagged along with my husband to the farm while Helen, one of the owners and a master at therapeutic massage, attended to his back problems. I thought I would wander around and see what I could see. Instead her dear husband brought these two out to the side pasture so I could spend time with them. Mom and babe. As the gate closed behind me I found a spot to sit in the grass and let them get used to me. 

With trepidation the babe watched me from behind his mom, then ventured out and back a few times. Following his own assessment and sensing no apparent concern about me from his mother, he suddenly took off like a rocket. He was running, leaping and literally springing up in the air as he raced in circles around the pasture, only to find himself on wobbly legs when coming to a stop. A pause for breath, a nuzzle, then off again. This amazingly steady yet unsteady circus act continued for an hour with only an occasional hesitation on his part when picking up the sound of my camera clicking. 

It was a lovely hour filled with the scent of earth, feel of sun and the sounds and sights of new life. And though we couldn't know at the time, one that proved especially meaningful later. Once home I was able to examine the results of all that clicking and play with a few of the better images. Later I made some larger prints for our friends in thanks for the morning. Those images were gifted to their daughter the same day for her birthday along with the beautiful blond tailed babe. 

I can still feel that morning in my bones, hear those little hooves. See him peeking at me from behind his moms long tail. And thankfully we have the images, for the little light filled fellow became sick a year or so later and passed away. Building trust that spring morning is a gift I treasure.

1 comment:

swamericana said...

I've been looking off and on for this post on your blog about the horses. I had seen the photo before but lost it somehow. So sorry to hear that he passed on. Building trust with the little guy made you and him happy. That was a special morning. -- Jack.

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