Scared To Death

“In the spring of 2012 I expressed the desire to start riding again. It was more than 30 years ago I rode and had my own horse for 10 years. But I was 30 years older and what if I fall and hurt myself. I spoke about it with Annemieke (Cathy’s daughter) and she said: “Why don’t you talk to my mom, Cathy?” I still took a while before I picked up the phone. Cathy called back and my first impression was a very pleasant one. I was worried about the image I remembered (riding schools where the outfit is important, the car you drive and the quality of your horse). Not really how well you ride or how you treat your horse.

I started with Cathy. Scared to death, stiff like a plank. Damascus (aka Big “D”) was my guy. Well he is very tall and I was not very sure about this. Cathy played into my comfort zone and we started from scratch. We are almost a year later and I could not imagine then what I have learned and still learn. Her teaching is fabulous. Her knowledge and love for her horses blows me away. The mistakes I learned 30 years ago are slowly getting solved. Riding is not the main interest. Knowing the horse. Understanding why he does what he does. Becoming his leader without dominance. And seeing the results with kindness and consistency.

I love it! I love being there, helping out, riding, grooming, just being with them. I have a great relationship with Damascus now. He is my buddy and I gained a great friendship with Cathy. Back of Beyond is my sanctuary for many years to come. The learning is just the beginning.”