Most of you know me personally, and felt compelled to visit this blog by my constant pleas on Facebook. Thanks for that! For those of you that don’t, you should probably meet my horse, Nickel, (his mother’s name was Penny). He will probably guest blog for me sometimes when I’m out-of-town or something. Don’t believe everything he says though. Nickel and I have been partners since before he was one. He’s been the horse I’ve always wanted and as good a friend as anyone could ask. The last year, however, was rough, as around Thanksgiving ’08 an infection developed in his right eye and all the efforts of good doctors, friends, family and myself were not enough to save it. The surgeon at the University informed me that removing his eye was necessary as the pain resulting from the infection and treatment could cause further systemic damage.
I don’t want this to become a tear-jerker (he wouldn’t like that), but when the patch came off after surgery it was difficult not to pity this horse I’d known since he was a baby. It was only with the help of family, good friends at the barn, and the horse community that had once again supported me in difficulty, that I was able to adjust. Everything, all of a sudden, was a new experience. What was he going to be like in turnout? How would the other horses react? Would he be spooky to ride? Would he bump into things? So…a year has passed, hair has grown over the indentation where his eye once was. The other questions? Shhhh…. Don’t mention it too loudly, I don’t think he’s noticed yet. Goes out with the other horses, still bossy. Doesn’t spook, works as well as ever, in the arena and out. Thinks he is the hottest looking horse at a showground. I’m not telling him any different. I think so too.
The photo above was taken by my dear friend and equine photographer Kay Woody of MKW Photography and is Nickel with my main sponsor “Mom”. Kay won my endorsement as best photographer ever after she told me of trying to photograph Nickel and Mom- “I kept trying to take it with his good side showing but he doesn’t seem to care, so I thought, why should I?’