Horses and Childhood Dreams: Times Past Challenge

1958.56 Irene on pony

Thank you everyone for such a wonderful array of stories of your push biking days. We are starting to get stories from more places round the world and it adds to the richness of our shared yet different experiences.

Charli made a comment that she preferred horses over bikes and it set me thinking – was having a horse all little girls dream? How many of us wanted one but it stayed a dream and how many had that dream fulfilled? For those growing up in rural areas was horse-riding ever a dream but rather a way of life? Did girls in the city and areas where horses don’t seem to be common have that same dream or did little girls where they come have a different universal dream. Did boys dream about horses? What was the male equivalent of the universal (?) dream for a horse? Have you gone on a trail ride and got a story to tell?

Please join in giving your location at the time of your memory and  your generation. An explanation of the generations and the purpose of the prompts along with conditions for joining in can be seen at the Times Past Page. Join in either in the comments or by creating your own post and linking. Looking forward to your memories.

Baby Boomer – Australia  country town

Like all the girls I knew I desperately wanted a horse as a child until I was around thirteen. I was always fobbed off with how much work it would be, that they didn’t call it mucking out the stable for nothing, I would lose interest, paddocks were too expensive to rent. I think that my friends had similar arguments put by their parents as none of my friends had horses either. Instead we contented ourselves by reading books such as A Taste for Blue Ribbons by Eugene Lumbers, Black Beauty by Anna Sewell, National Velvet by Enid Bagnol and C.S. Lewis’s A Boy and his Horse. There were probably more but these are all I remember decades later. My only real childhood experience of a horse was when a friend of my mothers had a foal born and we went to see it.

1963.10 C,I,foal JaniceDouglasNeal

© irene waters 2018

Naturally I fell in love with it and my desire for a horse increased dramatically at the time but I think it ended in sadness as my memory tells me the foal did not survive and I was devastated.

I only once went on a trail ride. I was around sixteen and I went with three school friends. Three of us were raw beginners whilst one had ridden before. She rode at the front and stupidly put her horse into a gallop which our horses followed. I managed to stay on as did one other friend but Bronwyn landed on the ground, luckily not hurting herself.

I’m looking forward to reading  your memories……. and don’t forget that if you are interested in memoir check out the series on the second Friday of the month over at Carrot Ranch. Join in the conversation.

Baby Boomer – Australian City


About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
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27 Responses to Horses and Childhood Dreams: Times Past Challenge

  1. A great story about horses, Irene. I rode a fair bit as a pre-teen and young teenager.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. The photos of you and your brother so young are priceless. The black horse may have been a miniature.

    I always wanted a horse, a palomino, and I read Black Beauty and National Velvet in pursuit of my dream. One of my very earliest memories of anything is of riding on the tiny merry go round that came to our neighborhood in the bred of a truck. It was in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, and I was less than three-years-old. Four horses that went round and round, and the dime or so that it cost for me to get to ride was a precious coin for my mom who couldn’t always afford it.

    About twelve years later, my parents owned a small avocado ranch in Southern California. They got three horses and the pregnant mare gave birth to a foal we named Tarreyton Willie. I never was a good rider but I loved the foal who loved to be around me.

    Baby boomer here.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I agree it must be a miniature or a pony. I love that you brought up merry go rounds. You were lucky to have a ride when you were a toddler. My first ride on one was when Roger and I were newly going out – I would have been in my thirties. Even later I went on one with my nephew in Switzerland. A lot of fun.
      I can see you Sharon with your foal. Beautiful image.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Pingback: Times Past – Horses | Musings of a Retiring Person

  4. macmsue says:

    I don’t understand why it’s usually girls who are interested in horses. My son decided he wanted riding lessons like his sister when he was about eight but unlike her he didn’t have a hankering to own one.
    Thanks for the topic, Irene, I posted my memories here

    Liked by 2 people

  5. noelleg44 says:

    The memories are not of me, but of my daughter, who fell in love with horses when we vacationed at a dude ranch when she was five. She started taking riding lessons and then got into competing in the hunter class. She had three horses: a large white pony, a spirited Arab and finally a wonderful bomb-proof quarter horse named Derby. I remember her walk/trot/cantering around the ring in her riding clothes, brains bouncing from under her hat – she was the only Asian child competing in every meet she went to. She won a lot of ribbons, but middle and high school sports competed for her time (along with our lack of funds), so she stopped riding.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks for sharing your memories Noelle. Having met your daughter I can visualise her on those three horses having read your wonderful description of her riding and the horses she rode. Seems as though she lived many little girls dreams but as with all dreams reality takes over.


  6. Charli Mills says:

    You look adorable on that black pony! Horses were such an integral part of my life that I never pondered that little girl’s dream. But I certainly encountered it, knowing girls who drew horses, had horses on their notebooks or wore jewelry and t-shirts. It’s a conundrum for me to sort out and I’m not sure I can because all I have is my perspective, so I’ll write from that. Thanks for this prompt!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Pingback: Horses and Childhood Dreams: Times Past – one letter UP ~ diary 2.0

  8. oneletterup says:

    Great story and photos, Irene. Interesting topic too. It was off my radar as a child and as a mom too.
    (it’s also funny how we were dressed in dresses for obviously active outings! – it was the same for me.)
    Here is my contribution:

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Pingback: Times Past: What is Memoir « Carrot Ranch Literary Community

  10. As always, Irene, I adore your photos. How adorable are you on that sweet pony, and with the foal…absolutely gorgeous! But I am so sorry to read your sad tale about the foul…I would have been devastated too. Again, we share many similaries in our childhoods, as I too was desperate to have my own pony, but never did, for the same reasons. I did have a friend who had one and occasionaly was able to ride, bareback on it, but I did go on to take horse riding lessons and enjoying hacking and going on trails for a time. But the rest I shall save for my post 🙂 Another great memoir prompt, Irene, I will get my post out, no doubt, squeaking in just in time as usual! Ready to saddle up? Let’s ride! 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Sherri. I’ll look forward to your post Sherri. You were lucky to have a friend with one. My horse riding days are definitely over (before they even began) but I do love feeling the velvety softness of a horses nose. You can ride and I’ll pat and then we’ll have a chat.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, their velvety noses are a delight aren’t they? Unfortunately, although I had a friend with a pony, I never got to ride it, but I liked feeding it 🙂 Ride, pat and chat…sounds like a plan! Thanks Irene 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: Horses and Childhood Dreams: Times Past Challenge | HHC Blog

  12. JoHanna Massey says:

    A lovely piece of writing Irene. It brought back many wonderful memories of, long ago and far away, my Father taking me to a local stable nearby, and riding on horseback through acres of woods and trails together. Many of my friends owned horses, belonged to the local 4H clubs, and I was able to ride with them often. As Adults, my Sister and I rode along Oak Creek in Arizona , on horses from one of the local stables that serve the tourists. There’s just something about horses…..Thank you. All my best to you.


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