Don’t Strap on the Feed Bag

I can’t remember the first time I rode a horse. It was sometime in my childhood, before my teen years. We never owned a horse or a pony, but Carl Hoffman, who lived on a farm a short walk up the dirt road, did. It was a work horse, dark in colour, if my memory serves me well.

The horse lived in a grand barn, built by Mr. Hoffman from the trees on the property. The beams had to be twelve inches square. They created a massive structure that would have lasted a century or more if careless idiots hadn’t burnt it down a few years ago.

The barn will live on in my memory, as will the horse and the wonderful smells inside the structure. Hay on a warm day, fresh manure and the general odour of farm life lived in that barn. It was pleasant to sit in it and smell the aromas. If I closed my eyes, I could dream of being in a time when life was simpler and horses depended on fresh grass and hay—set up for the winter—to survive.

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A Haflinger for a Hauflin

Gipsy gold does not chink and glitter. It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark. Attributed to the Claddaugh Gypsies of Galway.

When I went searching for the perfect horse breed for my fantasy novel, Shadows in the Stone, there were several characteristics I desired.

1) She had to be pretty with a flowing mane to capture the attention of readers and other characters.Haflinger

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