Here we are in the parking lot of the Willcox Livestock Auction on Thursday, seeking the perfect setting to showcase my new cap, an early birthday present from my sister.
A cowgirl over by the auction pens "lent" me her horse for a couple of shots.
Then we went to the corrals where working horses were waiting their turns to be ridden, where this one immediately took my eye.
A beauty, no? Now here's a fact about horses: many (thought not all) of them are extremely curious, so approaching a horse is often best done by not approaching it at all. Instead, let the horse come to you. This morning (day after horse photo shoot) I reached the chapter in Jane Smiley's book, A Day at the Races, called "Five Senses and More." In this wonderful chapter of a book that has transported me more than once since David and I started reading it, Smiley comes up with four pairs of personality adjectives for horses, parallel to the four pairs of personality adjectives in the Meyer-Briggs test. This beautiful horse was friendly (rather than aloof) and curious (rather than fearful), to peg him to only two of the eight possible adjective choices.
In the photo directly below, I am facing away from the horse, seeming not to pay it any attention.
In the next frame, note that while I have not yet turned around to look at or touch the horse, he has come over to investigate me. Can you see that soft nose touching me, smelling me? I felt it, so gently sniffing and snuffling, like little nose kisses on the back of my hand. Hence my happy smile.
I really think we made a connection. I would have been in complete horse love in five more minutes, and I like to think that in less than half an hour the horse would have returned my love.
For doubters and true believers both among my readers, I highly recommend the Smiley book.
P.S. If you missed the junior rodeo post, catch it here. Great little riders!!!