They tell me I slept in a bassinet in a window next to a pasture full of horses, and that the horses would hang their heads over the fence and look at me. You have probably heard of baby horses being imprinted by people. In my case it was the reverse. I was imprinted by horses.
For my parents, that meant I started asking for a horse at age five. My grandparents completed the conspiracy by purchasing ponies for my sister and myself a couple of years later.
I was horrified to learn that my pony’s name was Nigger. Here we were in the 1960’s, in the height of the Civil Rights Era, and I had a pony with a racist name. Because I loved Margeurite Henry’s Black Gold, and my pony was small and black, he morphed into Nugget. Like Black Gold, we loved to race, in our case, through the Big Sky pastures of Montana, and do things we were not supposed to do.
There is nothing like a Shetland Pony for building character and confidence. They can do anything and go anywhere, and Nugget taught me to ask no less of myself.
You might also enjoy Winning Bet, a clean horse read for 'tweens and teens.