This is my entry for the Round Robin and my Sapphire Monochrome (with the twist).
Java and me - our first ride together!
I've been planning this event since April of 2008 - my first ride on Java. I did not feel like it was fair to ask her to pack me around at the weight that I was, so as she and John were getting her broke, I was working on getting myself fit. As of today, I've lost 32 pounds, and while I'm not "there," I'm not going to quit.
The truth is, I could have easily ridden her sooner, but I decided way back in April that I wanted Java's and my first ride together to be on my birthday - that losing the weight would be my gift to HER and my first ride on her would be my gift to MYSELF. It's been a running joke between my friend John (that's him on Friday in the photo) and me. John started Java under saddle, and every Sunday when we'd go trail riding, John's been asking, "you ready to ride her today?" and I've been saying, "today's not my birthday." Until today. TODAY I said, "you bet."
And it was ... EVERY thing ... I hoped it would be. The first minutes were a bit overwhelming. My feelings for this filly are all tied up in my feelings and grief for her father, and I found myself crying like a sissy girl - just from the sheer wonderfulness of the whole thing and then saying a final good-bye to my beloved stallion who I never took the time to ride because he was a campaigning show horse and - silly me - I thought I've have lots of time to ride him when he retired.
Java doesn't remind me of him often, but today, as she went down the trail like a seasoned veteran, she showed me a lot of her father's thinking process and her mother's quiet attitude. I could not be happier. If I smile any bigger, I think my face will split.