I said I was back the last time I posted and I never did come back. And most likely I am just talking to myself at this point but that is really why I started blogging to begin with; to relive the ride by writing about it and to remember the moments years later.
In the early years of this blog, the horse world was new to me. New friends, new places, new events, new disciplines, new tack... you name it. I was a newbie. In some ways I hated to admit it and in other ways, I was like a sponge and wanted to know everything there was about horses and then some. Now, 15 years later, I sometimes think I lost that wanderlust. Maybe because I don't blog anymore. Or perhaps because I haven't ridden with our Wednesday group this year or put on 1,000 miles like I did when riding the Distance Derby. Or maybe what I am doing now only interests those who do the same thing. I'm really not sure what is different but I feel it in the air.
The last couple of years I have gotten more involved in Competitive Trail Riding (CTR). I have never in my life competed in anything so just deciding to be serious about something is outside my comfort zone. However, the people are friendly and welcoming which helps and I get to ride some beautiful trails and I am doing something I love to do and can do! How cool is that? It has made me pick up my game and be a better rider for Windy. I have to tell you that Windy has excelled more than her rider! I am still trying to catch up. What is very cool about the sport is doing it with Windy. We are becoming a team. And that alone is worth the entry fee. But that is not what this post is about. Really, I am not sure where I am going with it. I guess I am just a bit melancholy tonight and thinking about the early days.
Around the same time I started HTR, I started a Yahoo ListServ called Horsetales. It was a way for area horse riders to communicate to each other. It grew quickly; in its heyday was about 350 members strong posting thousands of thoughts each month for group comment. It wasn't without drama but for the most part, we all grew as riders and friends. Some of us never met but others became friends and riding buddies.
I fought Facebook as long as I could, but eventually we all went over to the dark side and the best analogy I can come up with was we graduated from Horsetales and all moved to the city. We got lost in the crowd and only our besties remained. No longer was there the tight knit group who shared ideas and ride reports and pictures. The accolades we would get from other Horsetalers pretty much dried up. The archives remain, still hosted by Yahoo, but it is no longer a part of our day or our horse life.
A few years ago, I stopped hosting the annual Horsetales ride; the interest wasn't there. This past year, storms canceled my Friday Before Mother's Day Ride. Next year there won't be one. I have moved on from that as well. Horsetales would bring it to life before the ride and we would share the stories long after the ride was over. The last time I hosted the ride admittedly I thought, "who are these people?" Lots of faces I had never seen before or after.
Where is Horsetrailriders.com going from here? I don't know. It, too, is an archive of my horse life and I use it quite frequently for time references. I hope that I can bring it back to what it once was and no, I will not do classifieds! My gosh! Those about killed me! But I miss the chronicle of my horse life and even though it isn't going in the same direction, doesn't make it less important. We have a new filly to start, we hope to have a foal in the spring and if my calculations are right, Windy and I will finish the CTR year with some blue ribbons. I have stories to tell.