On my first day at the Pony Trekking Centre we trooped down to the stables after breakfast to meet the ponies. I was allocated a beautiful strawberry roan mare called Whisper. She was so sweet, and when I rode her I fell more and more in love with her at every step.
After an amazing full-day ride on Wednesday, one of my new friends told me something I didn’t want to hear.
“Do you know Whisper is for sale?”
I didn’t want to believe her. I had already grown attached to Whisper, but I had a sickening feeling that she was right. The next morning I asked one of the yard staff if it were true, and she said yes. I felt like crying. I was never going to see Whisper again.
At the end of the week I got into my dad’s car and burst into tears, telling him everything. It was a long drive home. After a few tearful days and sleepless nights my dad and mum asked me if I thought Whisper was the right pony for me. Of course I said she was. They asked me more questions – what colour was she? How old? How tall? This is where it all went downhill. Whisper was only 13.2hh, which is way too small for me. Mum and dad said that if we bought her, Whisper wouldn’t be with us for long. I didn’t take that well and cried for days! But then my parents said we should start looking for another pony for me! Even though I didn’t want to give up on Whisper I realised that whatever home she went to was going to be the right home. It wasn’t going to be the right home with me. I couldn’t have my dream pony.
The first pony we saw was called Spotty, and he had awful sweet itch. His skin was inflamed and he was way too jumpy – definitely not first-pony material! The next pony we saw was a 14.2hh mare called Carrie, but Dad didn’t think she’d be right for me as she was 16 years old and a bit tubby.
THIRD TIME LUCKY!
We then went to see a beautiful grey, part Arab mare who was 13, lively and forward-going. She had done all Pony Club activities and loved jumping. My instructor, Julie, had a ride on her and confirmed that she was a lively and fun pony, but also sensible.
After I had a little lesson on her with Julie in the school we went for a short hack down the lane, going under a really low bridge. We were about to turn around and go back when a train suddenly whizzed past us on top of the bridge and the pony spooked. Well, I thought, what pony in the world wouldn’t have spooked at that? Ponies are ponies, aren’t they? You can’t be angry or annoyed at a pony for being scared, can you? Well, I couldn’t!
I was on tenterhooks waiting to know whether my dream pony passed the vetting, and ran home after school on the Friday it was due – but the news didn’t come. We had to wait several hours until the vet called us to tell us she had passed! It was the happiest moment of my life because that meant she would become my pony!
THANKS TO WHISPER
People always smile when I tell them the name of my pony – Capri-sun! We are jumping and are hoping to get selected for the team. I love Capri-sun so much! But there hasn’t been a day that has gone by when I haven’t thought about Whisper, and all the things she helped me to learn and achieve!