Friday, November 4, 2016

Hi, Wildoats back again.

Picking up where I left off. Remember, John worked in a leather shop to create my first halter, bridle and repair my first saddle. The saddle was the one thing I couldn't stand for the longest time, but each day John placed it on my back until it became second nature. The most important thing John taught me was to leave the barn whenever anyone new came to the farm. "Someone might take you away, so you have to learn to hide yourself." John told me. There was no way anyone would separate my Pal and I.  So I gladly learned with his teaching how to quickly escape the barn and hide, letting no one else near me. As spring came and went each year, me and John were almost inseparable. He started hanging bags of seed on the saddle, that was no bother. I learned how to walk the rows being planted and not step on the new seed that would bury it too deep. After each day in the fields, I enjoyed rolling in the dirt after he removed the saddle, or jumping into the water and swimming with John, Caleb and Chloe. Sometimes even the dark, gray-haired man would join us. It was in my third summer when John saddled me up like normal, then he said to me, "I'm going to climb on your back, don't buck me off". I wasn't sure about this as he put his foot in the stirrup and swung upon my back. He didn't weigh much more than what I had carried for him before. He was gentle as he sat on me, petting my neck saying, "Take it easy pal, it is only me on your back." His loving touch kept me calm, so I wouldn't buck. We stayed there for a few minutes while I adjusted to his weight. He took the reins and slowly turned my head, directing me to move in that direction. I responded and we went for a short ride. When we returned to the barn, he and I were excited, experiencing this togetherness. After that, neither of us could wait until the next time. I felt John's unhappiness when a buckboard showed up with his injured Pa and John worried he might die. When his father recovered and returned back to the war, we both were happy. The first time John fired a thing he called a pistol from my back, I did get spooked, but a few calming words from my pal and I was alright. He used the pistol whenever hunting rabbits, becoming very good at hitting his target. The first time he took what he called a rifle, we went deer hunting far from the farm. He bagged his first deer while sitting on my back. John was always talking to me and explaining things as he saw them. Sometimes he would ask my opinion and since I knew yes and no answers, I usually answered him back. He soon learned that if I had no answer or opinion that I would respond by blowing air out. This is my story about how we became such pals. You can read our adventures together in Saddle Spur, the story of John and I.

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