After a long summer of being away from home, I have finally returned, and Putney is exactly the way that I left it. The first day of classes arrive, and although the content has changed, there is an element of familiarity that I carry with me as I go about my daily routine. After what seemed like ages, the time for my Horseback Riding afternoon activity arrived, and I trekked down to the stable, where I’m always offered the chance to escape whatever stress or confusion I’ve faced throughout the day. When I arrived, I immediately noticed my favorite horse, Helen, in the communal pasture. I hadn’t realized how much I had missed riding until I saw her, and as I groomed her in preparation for a trail ride, it felt as if we were picking up right where we had left off in the spring.
Our class divided into the lesson group and the trail group, and we embarked on our supremely comforting and meditative journey over Sun Hill. Riding in the Vermont fall is perfect; the air is fresh and gentle, brisk but not harsh. Helen’s hooves crunch over leaves, and we rediscover our favorite parts of the trail together.
As we approached the end of the trail, I started to become glum; the worst part of horseback riding is always getting off. Thankfully, I know I’ll see Helen again the day after tomorrow.