I started my search for a horse. I decided a female horse would be best. It got really exciting when I had Hidalgo, Clyde, and Frisky all at the farm one time. It was when I dewormed them. I kept Clyde separate from Frisky and Hidalgo. Definitely, a lot of parading going on between Hidalgo and Clyde.
I saw a few horses. One was an older bay mare. She seemed very sweet and responsive but not very fast. She also looked pregnant and I asked if she was they told me no. I followed my gut as I did not want to be riding a pregnant horse in competitions. Turns out she was. Another was a black 3-year-old filly. She was pretty, very sweet, and tall. She looked fast. When I rode her I realized she was crossing her jaw and sometimes flipping her tongue over the bit. If you don't know what that is that means it is not good. It is a learned habit in getting away from excessive pressure from the bit. Not her fault but whoever rode her a lot did so with very heavy hands. I was barely putting any pressure and she was very responsive but not relaxed. She also seemed aloof. They said she competed a lot which tells me she probably didn't enjoy it. I thought about her for a while but decided not to. I remember riding the jeepney (a form of public transportation) from school that took a different route for a brief time when there was a lot of road work going on. We would pass this house in the city that had horses outside its gates. I didn't know them and my mother didn't know who they were either. Not a relative haha. I was very curious as the horses seemed well cared for. I don't know if we had a relative who did know them but somehow we ended up meeting with the owner of the house.
I will call him Dadz in my post which was kind of his nickname as he was a father figure to many people. Dadz had two horses for sale. A 4-year-old quarter-native horse mix and a 2 year going on 3 old quarter horse Arabian native mix named Sahara. He told me the 4-year-old had already done a few competitions and did well. The other horse was just started under the saddle.
Dadz had both horses bathed to show they could be handled and picked up all of their feet.
They were both gorgeous horses. However the 4-year-old seemed distant and not really interested in what was going on or me. I looked at Sahara who was looking at me batting her eyes. Dadz gave me a piece of bread to share with her. He told me that they were both good horses. One had more experience and was proven but the other showed a lot of promise with an interesting personality. The good thing is since she had just been started she can bond with me as I train her further. As he was talking to me Sahara tried and almost successfully untied her own rope. Dadz caught her and changed the knot. She looked a little frustrated. He continued to talk to me as we were behind her. I saw her start to back up to me at the end of her rope and she tried to reach me with her back hoof. (Not kick but like just get my attention) as we were pretty far away. I knew then which one I wanted. I went up to her and handed her the piece of bread and she was very gentle.
BUT I wanted to ride her first just in case.
Dadz was older and didn't ride as much as he use to but he knew a lot about horses and after talking to him I realized he thought more like me about training horses. He had one of his trainers ride Sahara. They went through all of the gaits including the gallop and she seemed very content. I got on her.
My heart was pounding. I wasn't afraid but super excited and trying to contain it. Something about her just felt right. She was the size of the 6-year-old horse I learned to ride on for barrel races. I got on her and she was so soft and responsive. I did a few figure 8s at different gaits with her and got her to canter. I didn't gallop her as she was sweating a bit and I knew she was just started. We really felt connected and she seemed very interested in me and calm. I didn't feel worried about not testing out galloping.
My mom and I decided to get her. They rode her to our farm (at a walk or trot) to drop her off which was the longest she had been ridden about an hour and a half ride. The trainer gave her a shower and said goodbye. She was a bit upset at him leaving. Which to me was a sign he really cared for her and vice versa.
She was an extremely clever horse. She enjoyed my company but I knew she missed home I had to go back to school during the week. Soon as I left and was in the city I got a text she may have broken out of the farm with a well-timed getaway run as someone was trying to close the gate behind them. She had memorized the trip from her home and made it halfway back. Luckily as I said, I had a lot of relatives and some recognized her and caught her.
I realized she was a very curious affectionate horse very different from other horses I knew. She LOVED people. She also lacked some confidence in herself and could be timid about new things but she always gave her best and turned out to be sassy at times. She would follow my steps to the T and step on my ankles. She just liked being super close to me for comfort and eventually, she learned she would be just fine not breathing down my neck. I spent the first few months learning about groundwork and lungeing along with riding her without a saddle at the walk, trot, and canter.
Sahara and I instantly clicked. We got along so well.
PS: That girl could eat a lot of mangos. Mango Monster. With her your chances of getting a mango to yourself was very slim.
Also, Dadz turned out to be a wealth of knowledge for me and we became great friends. He had a lot of connections and knew a lot about horses. He was also very supportive of my wanting to compete someday. He really welcomed me into the horse community which I will be forever grateful for.
All we were missing was a saddle.