Getter Done Gals


Sunday, June 3, 2012


By Julie Carter When C.S. Lewis’s The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe became a movie, it brought a wonderful old story to a new generation. It even rekindled the imaginations of the generations that had read the story in its printed version. I know my dad would have found it hard to believe, but there was a time I rode winged horses high over tree tops and brandished a sword to fight off the evil invaders of my kingdom while waiting for a prince to come fight by my side. Although my horses never talked, they did plenty of listening. Every morning just after daylight but before the school bus arrives; a boy whistles up the saddle horses and feeds them their token of grain. That simple chore puts a smile on his face and a spring in his step that sets the tone for the day ahead. Smart old saddle horses know when it’s feeding time and who is going to feed them. At the sight of the boy and the sound of his whistle, they came at a high lope, offering up a couple nickers and head tosses, and even the occasional obligatory buck as they ducked through the gate to the feed bunk. There was a time that the act of a morning chore tending to horses was the norm, not the exception. This chore captivated the magnetism that is created when a child and horse are put together in a partnership. Lewis’s third book in The Chronicles of Narnia series, A Horse and His Boy, captivated imaginations of many youngsters because they could take the story into their own life and relate to it. The mythical elements of the story are quickly transposed forward in time and place to a stocking-legged bald-faced sorrel horse with the finely honed ability to beg for grain and look good while doing it. Most ranch kids experience that special relationship with the horses they own while growing up. Long before a horse is simply functional equipment for the business, he is a friend, a confidant, and absolutely the best thing a kid could own. I don’t have the exact equation, but I believe that relationship builds something into the character of the child--a foundation of love and trust that makes some sort of difference in his adult world. No matter where life takes him, those hours, days and years of having that unconditional love from a horse (well okay, unconditional except for oats) seals something in his heart that no one can take away. And my own personal winged horse? He was one of several very regular ranch horses I rode during my formative years. My sword? Read that “branch” -- torn from the nearest tree. And the evil invaders of my kingdom? Those, of course were my younger brothers. They were so very gullible. The secret to my kingdom was to always ride faster horses and learn to duck flying objects. Those evil invaders were also not so very forgiving when they found out they had been duped by the princess on the flying horse. Julie can be reached just inside the border of Narnia at

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