After my son was born, I turned to a different kind of horsepower – an Arabian gelding of pure lineage named Nijem Warrior. I bought him for a song because he was young, and had him green broke at a ranch called the Ponderosa near Lake Roberts, NM (Hoss and Little Joe were nowhere in sight, though).
After getting him back home from boarding school, I was instructed to ride him every day so he wouldn’t forget his training. I’d race home from work on my lunch hour, saddle up Nijem, and pretend to barrel race between yuccas in the yard. On weekends, my friend, whose beautiful Appaloosa was named Cinnamon Sky, and I would take longer rides on a ranch across the street from my house. We’d bring gourmet picnics in our saddlebags with wine, cheese and crackers, and chocolate for dessert.
Nijem is long gone but today I am lucky enough to have a wonderful friend who lets me ride one of her horses. His name is Cochise, and he stands 17 hands tall. He always lags a little at first but when his afterburners kick in (letting go of digested hay – yes crapping – and farting endlessly), those huge, powerful muscles of his are hard to stop from breaking into a run. I just love this horse!
My love of horses prompted me to write my first book, Golden Enchantment. It takes place in 1880 New Mexico and involves the hunt for a buried treasure of gold left behind by the Spanish conquistadores. Golden Enchantment is available in print or e-book from ChampagneBooks.com.