Saturday, November 5, 2011

Stirrups and reins

I have never liked sports. It's so not me... I don't like to compete and I never got the logic behind sports games.
I don't care who wins or loses. I just can't be bothered.
I don't like the yelling that comes with sports like soccer or the comments given on cycling on TV. The only sports that got my attention, was horse back riding. I didn't see it as sports, maybe that's why I liked it that much.

My favorite horse was Torro. He was huge! I know I was a kid back then and all horses were huge in our eyes, but really, Torro was immense. It was the sweetest and kindest horse I had ever met. I used to ride Wilstar before Torro came to stay in the riding school. There was something about Torro that was so appealing to me.
I could barely get on his back - the teacher used to help me - but once I found a good seat, the fun began. Torro was real gentle with me.
I loved the rhythm of the trotting, before we came one in a flowing gallop. For 5 years, Torro was my soulmate.
I went to the riding school twice a week. Cleaning stables to finance my riding lessons, I spent quite some time with Torro. So many occasions to caress the soft spot on his nose, to clean his eyes and brush his fur. He was all shiny after brushing him.

I have a bamboo box that keeps memories safe. I found several youth pictures in that box. One of those pictures was an old picture of me, sitting on Torro and stroking his neck. On the back of the photo, a piece of tape is holding 3 hairs. My fingers touched the picture and just for one moment, I could smell Torro. Whoever went horse back riding, knows what the specific scent of horses smells like. I closed my eyes and let my mind go back in time. It felt good and warm.

Torro got older and trotting wasn't easy for him in the end. So the stable owner decided Torro was ready to retire. They sold him and I never went back to the riding school.. I just couldn't ride a different horse..

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