Last time I visited P&P, I blogged about my favorite cowboys. You can’t have a cowboy without a horse, so that got me thinking . . . In all the books I’ve read, the movies and TV shows I’ve seen, and the real life horses that have crossed my path, which are my favorites?
No. 1 — The Black Stallion
My dad took my brother and me to visit Nana every Sunday morning. We’d stop for donuts–chocolate ones with sprinkles–then we’d go to her house in North Hollywood. Without fail, she’d have one of Walter Farley’s books waiting for me. I read The Black Stallion at least a dozen times. Remember the shipwreck? The big race at the end? Fictional or not, the Black was a magnificent animal.
Number Four in the series was The Island Stallion. I look at that name now and smile. When I’m naming characters (horses count!), I grab something out of the air. I can just see Walter Farley sitting at an old typewriter and thinking, “The horse is red. I know . . . I’ll name him Flame.”
My infatuation started with a children’s chapter book, but even more personal was a story from my other grandmother. Apparently she and my grandfather weren’t always the mild mannered grandparents I knew. During the Depression, they placed a few bets at Hollywood Park. They were also Seabiscuit fans. They never won big at the races, but this spirited horse gave them a reason to cheer in hard times.
No. 3 — Man O’War.
Who doesn’t love Big Red? He was a champion through and through.
No. 4 — Little Joe’s Pinto
Okay, I admit it. I had a crush on Little Joe. He had the coolest horse, at least that’s what I thought on those Sunday nights I stayed up for Bonanza.
No. 5 — Jake
Jake wasn’t famous or fast. He didn’t have the fancy markings of a tri-color paint or the style of a black Arabian. He was an ordinary trail horse, a member of the summer rental string when we lived in Pine Mountain, California. Jake is special because my oldest son, Joe, learned to ride on him. Joe took first place in that season’s competition. He was a good rider, but the ribbon really belonged to Jake. That old horse was rock solid, but he had enough spirit to give a ten-year-old boy a thrill.
Get your name in the drawing by leaving a comment: Vicki is giving away an autographed copy of THE MAGIC OF CHRISTMAS!