No volunteers, the kids don't ride. Its as simple as that.
It's a very tiring work afternoon, no rest, even a potty break is quickly taken and back to the ring. The riders are mostly independent and it is a pleasure to watch them tack the horses and ride with ease, some with no side walkers.
I prefer side walking because of the interaction with the riders. It is such a pleasure to be able to
converse, laugh, joke, and listen to their hearts and words of wisdom. as a leader, you concentrate on controlling the horse. Well, it is very difficult for me to keep my big mouth shut and find myself chatting, laughing andgetting teased by the riders, especially when Ted nips at my arm, sending Vanessa into rolling
laughter. My motto is, "if I make you laugh, I am happy". Fortunately (and unfortunately) we are so understaffed on Wednesday afternoons that I am not "busted" for conversing with the participants.
I leave the ranch exhausted but my soul is light and totally bursting with pride from all the great riders, the commaradity of the volunteers who always seem to pull it off, no matter how understaffed we are. Watching sara, our scholarship girl from the Derby Fund Raiser, tacking Dotty totally solo, watching John, our Special Olympic's champ, prepare Ted for his lesson and our leader, Debbie, and her calmness preparing Buddy, knowing that we will manage and all the riders will have a great afternoon.
Wishing everybody a great weekend,B'ahava