Auld Lang Syne from You…

WMClaraWinterThe sun’s out and there isn’t much snow, but nothing’s melting at all. It’s been bitter cold during these days between Christmas and New Year’s and lessons have cancelled all week.

I’ve had a little too much time to think. It’s easy to get sentimental this time of year, but I am feeling full-out mushy.  I’m missing horses and riders who aren’t around. Some have moved away and sent holiday cards with photos and wacky drawings. Some have only transitioned out of lessons for the holiday season, but the horses have a way of sticking in my head, even in their absence.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?

Not a chance. ‘Tis the season to hum Auld Lang Syne (because no one knows all the words) and remember some really spectacular moments shared with my clients over the last year: there were courageous first steps and flawless canter departs, leg yields as smooth as skating on ice and half-steps that hung in the air just a bit longer than expected.

Best of 2012 lists are everywhere this time of year, and now Readers, I’m hoping it’s your turn. I’ve been writing for you all year. Would you kindly return the favor?

What’s your Best of 2012 moment with another species? No restrictions, it’s a way of saying thanks. Would you share a few sentences about the moment that you savor above the others? Or even just your partner’s name or a photo link. I know it’s dorky, even embarrassing, but humor me. Big or small, share that moment that stays in your mind. Edgar says pretty please.

We’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.    Robert Burns.

Let’s share a midnight toast to the perfect moments shared with animals this year and celebrate our rich legacy- for old time’s sake.

With a special debt of gratitude to my clients, I send best wishes for a New Year filled with peace, harmony and multi-species love from all of us at Infinity Farm.

And now it’s your turn…


This blog is free, and it always will be. Free to read, but also free of ads because I turn away sponsorships and pay to keep ads off my site. I like to read a clean page and think you do too. If you appreciate the work I do, or if your horse does, consider making a donation.

Anna Blake

21 thoughts on “Auld Lang Syne from You…”

  1. Happy New Year, Anna, What a wonderful opportunity to tell you how much I enjoy seeing your photos and reading your blog.  I’m not a dressage rider, but a trail rider; though tempted to say “just” a trail rider, I revised it in my mind, as I think about all the challenges my lovely mare, GF Dream Lover, faces in carrying me miles in the West Elk Wilderness.  Crossing creeks, not losing her mind when spruce grouse racket up out of the brush, maintaining her aplomb when seeing a bear, climbing impossible trails and always bringing me back safely to the trailer–she’s my sweet girl.  I wish such pleasure and happiness for all riders and their partners. Happy New Year! Sharon Northrup and GF Dream Lover (aka Squish)

  2. I count on your reflections, guidance and encouragement every Friday. It’s another way of staying connected to my friend, Anna. Belle and I didn’t have the opportunity to interact on a trail or in an arena as much as I would have liked, although she certainly got her daily touch, treat and love from me. A few of the times we saddled up were thrilling. “Thrilling” came after the realization that I could let Belle choose a direction or a pace and simply ride without interfering. Belle seemed to blossom with the concept that she could have a “say-so.” Thanks, Anna, for your words of enlightenment. You are appreciated!

    • Oh no, Pat. Thank you! The aptly-named Belle will never begrudge you your ‘day job’, and I know your partnership with Belle is so much bigger than the saddle.

  3. I find it nearly impossible to pick “just one” out of all the Big Moments of this very big Three-Horse Year. One that stands out, and was also visually captured, was kind of a small moment in the scheme of things. My new horse was injured, I had finished doctoring her and gotten my old horse ready for a ride. Bareback in the indoor arena. We didn’t do a lot, just sort of meandered around, enjoying each other. The sun was setting and coral light was streaming through the west arena door. My white horse was turned impossibly pink against the drab gray footing. I followed his walk with my seat as I wondered at his freckled coat and wave of mane, bathed in sunset, illuminating all of our twenty years together.

  4. Lara, thanks for your comment, along with the photo of your sweet old boy. I appreciate your sentiments. And your sentimentality… That kind of understated moment is my favorite too. Count you and yours as missed by me, as well.

  5. We are living in Malta. My horses are being cared for by a friend on her ranch in Ca. So I read your blog for my horse fix. We are sailing for a few years and here in Malta for some repairs. So my animal memory is not equine but avian. Just out side the Valetta harbor , just gliding above the sea, were large, awkward , noisy , Pink birds. Yep a flock of migrating Flamingos. Spectacular . Such a gift.

  6. Hi Anna, I have always enjoyed the humor and grace you inject into your blogs, It has been a pleasure to meet you. I hope you have a wonderful New Year and I am looking forward to continuing the journey!
    I have been fortuneate to have had many really cool experiences with my four horses, but one event that sticks out is the time this past summer, when I babysat my grandchildren for a week while their parents were away. I was still at home, taking care of the horses just the same, cleaning stalls, feeding, offering treats over the fence,etc., I just wasnt there mentally with them.
    At the end of the week the children went home, my ponies were out in the pasture, so I went out and sat on a barrel and waited, it didnt take long, as one, they all came over to me and formed a circle around me. Each one touched me somewhere, a nose on my knee, a lick on my hand, a head on my shoulder……. we all just enjoyed each others company – the silence was wonderful, those moments were unforgettable, in turn, they each welcomed me back into the herd.
    Someone once told me that the perfect number for a herd of horses is five, why? i dont know. Since then, I have always thought that the four of them were lacking a member somehow, however, that day, they told me that we had the perfect number after all, for I was that fifth member.
    I am so grateful to my herd for sharing their lives and companionship with me.

  7. We have no horses and I’m not a rider so I will admit that I like to sing with the birds when I am walking in the forest. Happy New Year 🙂

  8. It would be hard to pick a favorite moment of 2012 with Elly, because as far as Elly’s concerned, “life is good” every day. She’s always up for something new, something different. But our most fun is playing “catch the horse” in the big turnout. I get to play the sneaky mountain lion, and she gets to gallop full out to “run away.” Then she stops and waits for me to “sneak up” on her so she can do the same thing again. And when she’s done, she calls “truce” and comes in for a treat and a rub. PLUS she gave me the highest test score I’ve ever received on any horse at any level, on the same day that it took 3 hours to remove the mud she’d rolled in. She is a funny and loving friend who always reminds me that indeed, life IS good, and to always cherish the present moment.

  9. So, Anna, you say it’s my turn…Jasper and I feel priviledged to be included among your much more experienced clients. I’ve been thinking about the quote I mentioned at our last lesson: “One of the earliest religious disappointments in a young girl’s life is her unanswered prayer for a horse.” (I’m not home now to find the source, but I do have it.) So here I am with my horse and big gray mule, no longer disappointed, instead fulfilled. I am also blessed with 4 grand-daughters who will never look over a fence yearningly, but will climb through and allow their souls to be touched and taught by forces larger than themselves.

    • Kathy, this legacy of girls and horses, that some of us never do escape (or even try) is so immense it almost defies words. Your quote is wonderful, it is the same big thing from another angle. Horses are an answered prayer for so many things. Thank you for sharing this. Your grand-daughters are so fortunate to have you. And as for Jasper. It isnt that I like Jasper, I think besotted is a better word. No one teaches like a mule. It is a joy to work with the two of you.


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