One of the best parts of working on Semper Fi Cowboy for me were all the horse scenes. I have loved horses for years.
In fact, one of the first time I rode I was all of ten years old and I escaped from my uncle’s house in Stafford and went over to this beautiful field nearby with horses in it. There was grey gelding there with a loose halter on. If you got on his back, he’d take you for a trot along the sandy river, then back again. Most of the time he only let you have one ride and that was it.
Also, where I grew up in Dallas, we lived in an apartment, but there were riding stables about a mile away. I used to hike over there at every opportunity. The folks who owned the stables let me groom or pet the horses as long as I followed the rules, and more than once they’d take me into the arena to ride one of the more bombproof mares while they controlled the horse at the end of a lunge line.
When I was in fifth grade, my parents saved up to send me to a summer camp in Texas where I got to ride every day. I experienced two of my worst accidents there, but also learned so much about horses and not once was I ever afraid. The wrangler and stable master were excellent at helping me see what I’d done which contributed, how to improve, and what I needed to do to avoid them in the future. Their love for horses matched my own and emphasized to me that I was where I wanted to be.
Flash forward several years to when I made my own dream come true. I owned horses. Rode regularly, trained, and rescued them. I’d done everything from delivering a foal to gentling a mustang, to putting a young horse’s first halter on and being the first rider on a horse’s back. I’d done jumping shows, and hunter rides, and long, lazy trail rides as we explored the country side.
It was heaven.
It was horses. Writing Semper Fi Cowboy brought up every single one of those memories.