I love horses and grew up riding and taking care of them – it was a huge part of my young life. But, when I left for college in a big city, then moved to an even bigger city after graduation, my riding days came to an end. My parents sold our little farm and the horses (to good homes, of course). I miss riding and am always ready to get back on a horse.
There have been lots of opportunities in our travels, but always in depressing, heartbreaking beachside situations where the horses live in squalor and are obviously treated badly. Seeing those poor creatures – in Turks & Caicos, Puerto Rico, and basically anywhere there’s a concentration of tourists and cruise ships with riding on the activity menu, makes me cry real tears.
Then my friend and fellow equestrian, Jennifer, told me about her ride in Mustique. She described the top-notch facilities and medical care the horses received. A Google search revealed that the royal family had shipped their horses to this stable so they could ride while vacationing there. We decided to visit the island, so I could check it out.
Between spells of rain, we selected a perfect evening for our sunset ride. We went early to hang around the stables and everything was spot on – the place was well-staffed and immaculate. Our horse assignments were posted on the whiteboard – Prada for Jen, and Pie for me. If you know us both, you’re laughing over the appropriateness of these assignments.
It was glorious. I remembered how to ride! Heels down, thumbs up, posting… it all came back to me. We, along with several island vacationers and Liz, the stable director, rode around the pristine island on trails and over fields, carefully avoiding the giant tortoises that litter the island grounds. We rode to the beach as the sun was setting and took the horses for a dip.
It was a beautiful and thrilling experience – one I’ll never forget.