By Jeff Wilson
I want to fill you in on my hot-off-the-press horsey adventure that I rode recently. Let me tell you about it. It’s simply written for and about the love of the horse, with a true story to share with you. Now being given a gift, is a gift that really is—priceless. No money can buy it! It creates a honkin’ good vibe, right? I have a mouth-droppin’, red-eyed (it was for me anyway), horsey story to tell you involving a ten year old, black, Andalusian stallion named Celesto. This big black ‘bull’ of a horse arrived at my facility in late May. What makes him unique, first, was he was gifted to me (almost) on my birthday. (Hey, it was one day away but I still call him my birthday present.)
The other unique thing was his incredible disposition. But, “He’s never, ever been out on trails,” his old trainer informed me on the other end of the phone. I thought to myself, “Well, that’s easy enough to fix.”
I have to admit, when owners tell me their horse is so special, I always agree, with a wink and a nod to myself. Everybody has that great horse, and it’s good to be so in love with your horsey, but…When Celesto’s owner informed me of her intention to gift him to me, I was honored, but I was also secretly guarded, regarding just wonderful he really was. Was he a grumpy grump or roman-nosed? Don’t want that, I breed Morgans. They have sweet faces, and that’s what I have. How ‘bout soundness, temperament, and disposition? How about ‘pluggy’? Beauty can truly be in the eye of the beholder. Well, I held my breath waiting to see this horse. The owner, Barbara, is from the generation that doesn’t have cell phones yet, so no pictures seemed to exist.
The day he arrived came, actually the middle of the night when he rolled up outside my barn. There he stood, munching a wee bit of hay—without a care in the world as I peered into the open trailer. Life has been good to this royally rolled dumpling, and I also thought he definitely resembled a black Angus bull. This dude was a dude!
What really impressed me has come over the weeks I’ve handled him.
A gentle and kind soul, he remarkably resembles Ferdinand the Bull. Remember how Ferdinand wanted to smell the flowers instead of fight? I got that stallion.
Trail riding was cake—chocolate cake, with a dollop of ice cream, and rainbow sprinkles. He is just so easy to ride with anybody, including mares. Well, the cute little Arabian mare was dead in heat unbeknownst to me when we all went out riding. He crooned a couple melodies while we were out, deep and suave, but stayed the perfect manageable stallion. Did I just inherit a perfect horse?
Yeah I did. Over the days that pass, I have watched the interesting vibe that Celesto creates whenever he is out too. He magnetizes the people around him. I would never have believed so many people would come to my facility to see him, and come back again.
“What will my Morgan friends think?” definitely crawled around from my boots to my brain. I have, after all, been breeding Morgans for almost forty years. But each breed has remarkable traits that make them special. I enjoy experiencing every breed I can.
My Morgan roots give me my love to trot. Morgans live to trot. So for me to check under the hood of this so-called ‘sporty set of wheels’ meant he had to trot. Oh Yeah! Those gears are all there. What is so nice too is the level of training that has been put into this horse. His dressage training is solid. You want soft and supple, Celesto is king of the road. I believe the experience can be summed up with the term baroque: Old world charm born out of centuries of carefully planned genetics for ease of handling. A ride that surpasses what most riding horses never achieve. I’m talkin’ smooth comfort people, not speaking to a discipline. But, I can tell you this: The Andalusian breed can cut the rug on any dance floor for sure with this suave dancer.
Lucky? Yes. I’m luckier than a fly with a broken fly-swatter at a picnic buffet. The generosity of people and the gift of horse-drawn relationships are the stuff movies and books are made of. A huge thank you to the heart of this woman gifting me this horse I’ll get to write stories with.
So my plans, you might ask? Well, I’ve always wanted to be Zorro so now I can.
I’m over yonder at the edge of nothing, laying in the dirt with the social media stampede. Please take some time and “like” us on FACEBOOK so I can stand back up, dust myself off, and smile like that goat in yer rose garden. I have been training horses for over 35 years and value the western horse lifestyle in my approach to training. Giving clinics and seminars on how to reach your full potential with your horse through the training foundation of Cowboy Dressage keeps me young.
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