*I posted this on Facebook and Instagram in early June, but thought it was also important to share here.
On the afternoon of March 31st, heaven rolled out the red carpet and set out a velvet cushion and a silver platter of peppermints for Her Majesty, Hochmut – the most perfect “chestnut mare in a bay body”, most unbelievable quality, supermodel of a mare that I have ever had the distinct honor of calling my dearest friend.
As a youngster, she won everything (and I mean everything) in the breed classes – Champion of the 4 and 5-year-old Mares, Stallions, and Geldings under the lights at WEF, Champion at NEDA, etc – acquiring awards and accolades that proved how much she loved being fussed over, primped, and presented in-hand to an audience that obviously had gathered specifically to admire her.
When I first met her, it took me a little while to warm up to her. She was confident in herself and her purpose – if you were in her way, she advised you to move. If you were most horses, her social distance radius was well beyond 6 feet and the paperwork required to enter was extensive. She took two years off to have baby Coriander (who, as though instructed by mom, never had an awkward baby phase), and when Cori was weaned, Ruth started lunging HM again.
I never in my life would’ve guessed that I would get to ride such a horse. But one day, Ruth told me to get my helmet and get on. So there, in front of a small crowd of everyone who was at the barn that day, HM spooked and ran away with me. I lost one (or both?) stirrups, stayed on, and was irrevocably in love.
This mare – this sweet, difficult, highly opinionated, PERFECT mare – completely changed my life. She re-instilled in me that child-like love of riding that I didn’t know I was missing. No matter how our rides went, I had a smile on my face because I was with her. Every ride was a conversation, and although she didn’t always agree with what I was saying, I knew she was listening.
So I kept talking. At the end of each day, I spent a little extra time with her after picking her stall, chatting to her about nothing, scratching her favorite spots, and telling her that we were a team – “You don’t leave me, I don’t leave you.”
And I didn’t.
RIP Hochmut. We’re still a team, and we always will be. I love you, Girly Girl. ❤ ❤