I don’t think I’m breaking any news when I say that horses are right up there with pink and princesses on the stereotypical “things little girls like” list. And while I was something of a tomboy when it came to the latter two, I did meet expectations with my huge love of horses. Unlike most little girls, however, I didn’t just want to own a horse or be a show rider. No, I wanted to be a jockey, or at least I did until I grew too tall before I was even a teenager. I suppose it’s not that strange of a goal when you consider that a family vacation to Saratoga Race Track was one of my family’s annual rituals, but I don’t know anyone else who had it on their childhood career list.
Even though it became obvious fairly early that being a jockey wasn’t going to happen (the first – though certainly not the last – time I realized that not all careers would work out for me), I was still determined to learn how to ride. I think there was part of me that really believed that if I was just a good enough rider, then my dad would have to let me get a horse of my own. Uh, yeah. I wasn’t always the brightest kid.
I did pretty much all my riding at Girl Scout Camp over the course of four or five summers. This picture is from one of those times, though I am not 100% sure which camp this picture is from, as I went to two: Camp Amahami in New York, and Camp Archbald in Pennsylvania. I think this is the former, since I am a little bit older (10, if the date sent with the photo is correct) and I recall going to Archbald when I was younger. This was taken at either a pre- or post-ride horse grooming session, which was a big part of riding camp. We had to learn how to take care of the horses – short of mucking out the stalls – in addition to getting riding lessons.
I’ll have to look and see if I have a photo of me actually on a horse, for a future Wayback Wednesday – or at least one of me in my riding helmet, because it was spectacular. My then-aunt had gotten it for me on our family trip to California and it was navy blue velvet. Everyone else’s was plain black, so mine was clearly the best. To this day, it is actually one of the favorite things I have ever owned.
Do you have photos from your past that you’re willing to share – and a blog to post them on? Play along with Wayback Wednesday by linking back to this post or sharing in the comments so I can snoop into your past, too!