Sunday, June 9, 2024

A Bit of Something

The whirlwind week is over, and it’s time to reflect on what happened. First, hauling Epona to training.  


As you all know, a lot of work went into preparing Epona for her big day. Practice tying for long periods. Loading and unloading. Leading. The basics. 

We also made a checklist of things to take with her to help transition: her own hay, fly spray, grain, and even water from our well.

My husband had the tires inflated properly and oil checked on the truck, and I had a fire extinguisher…just in case.  I also made sure to have a full tank of gas, so that when I loaded Epona, I was ready to jump in my truck and go, not stopping until we arrived at the training barn  

With all the preparation, it was a success. Epona settled right in and even had hay from home. Her trainer said later that day that she had already taken over and become the boss. (She gets that attitude from her mama, so I wasn’t surprised.)

She unloaded like a champ, and held it together even when a deer ran by about 30’ from us. 😳 She was the first to see it, and she was shaking, but she stood still next to me—just like her mama would have done. Which begs the question, how much of a horse’s personality comes from the Dam? Seems like a helluva a lot.

On the way to her stall, she had to pass her daddy, who didn’t know he was her daddy. Sarah, the trainer, yelled at him. Knock it off! This is your daughter! Haha. 

I got to see Sarah’s new paint foal, a stud colt, and oh my, oh my. Baby fever. But no. I have enough on my plate with T-Boo.

So, let’s talk a little about my boy & his day at the obstacle clinic.


My first observation is that 90 minutes is only enough time to scratch the surface, and I wish I had signed up for 2 time slots. 

We arrived early and I took Tweed over the outside obstacles, close to where the clinic was going on. They had one of those tall, waving ballon figures you see at car lots, and it was blowing around pretty good so that you could see it really well from about anywhere. Tweed did awesome giving me his attention right out of the trailer, even with all the excitement, scary objects, noise, horses, and riders. It was impressive.

When our time slot was called, we entered with a new batch of horses and riders (a lot of freaked out horse energy) and went through them based upon difficulty: green, yellow, and the hardest, red.

Tweed was doing really well, but then a horse started bolting around behind him and it made him agitated. He started to resist focusing on me and the obstacles because he wanted to think about, and look at, what was going on around him.

Which leads me to the best piece of advice I got, and it was from an older  horse trainer gentleman who helped us. He said:

I don’t want to disparage horses, but….(long pause)

They can only think about one thing at a time…(long pause)

And that should be you.

Translation: he wanted me to only walk, or ride, straight lines with Tweed, and do that until his attention was relaxed and only on me. As we walked, we got closer to the red obstacles, and sometimes into them, but he also warned me:

Don’t get greedy.

Translation: you’ve got to learn when it’s best to stop and call it a win.

I only got about ten minutes of saddle time, and it was over. Seemed so short!  But what a win it was for the two of us! 

I learned a lot in that super short time, about myself and Tweed, and the partnership we are each seeking. I felt it happening.

Which leads me to the title of this post: A Bit of Something.


I hope this makes sense. I think it will for most horse people. It goes like this:

When you’re devoted to a horse, you are looking for a bit of something. I can’t fully define what it is, because I don’t have a word for it, but it’s what you entrust your life to.

It’s a big frickin’ deal.

Turns out, your horse is looking for that same bit of something from you.

Perhaps, it’s that part of you that would walk over hot coals for them. Or broken glass. Or even risk death to defend them.

Both horse and rider know it when they see it and feel it, and you grow further into it with every big challenge you face together.

As you do grow into it, certain sparks begin to light in your soul, and they draw you even closer together…toward a true partnership.

That’s the golden ring we’re all pursuing.


  1. Hmmm all I can say is you did a whole lot of things right!
    Good work with both Epona and Tweed. And gotta love old cowboys and their wisdom.

    1. Yes, I sure wish he lived closer, because I’d like to sit at his feet and learn. I can’t believe I’ve never met him before this weekend. I’d heard his name a lot in a positive way, and now I know why so many people like him.

  2. First of all, I’m glad that trailering went well. I’ve heard many times that the dam sets the temperament.

    Good work with tweed. It’s so hard to not be greedy. And I 100% agree with the idea ‘a Lille something’. I had very similar experience this weekend and was trying to figure it out. You described it well.

    1. I can’t wait to read your post!

      The dam sets the temperament? I believe it.

  3. Wow! Great team work (and take aways) at what looks like a very busy clinic. Sounds like you spent the right amount of time at the clinic. More is not always better.

    1. Yes, I’m trying to internalize his wisdom : don’t get greedy.


Please feel welcome to join our discussion by telling us about your own thoughts and experiences.