Respect for the horse….

(Shade says thanks to one of the ‘secret sweepers’)

I guess I am old fashioned…but I was always taught that the barn is the horse’s home and that it has to be kept clean. Further, I was always reminded that a neat, clean barn is a reflection of our respect for the horse and the sport.

Sometimes, of course, we all fall short of our goals. In particular, the condition of the barn especially on show days can be a little less than stellar.

We had a horse show here on Sunday and the very first division was the beginner division. These are the kids that are just starting out in their showing career.

Looking back (way back!) I remember how nervous I used to get going to horse shows when I was younger. I often didn’t sleep as well as I should have the night before and the nervous energy I had the day of the show left me pretty tired after the days’ events.

I am sure that is how the kids in the first division this past Sunday felt too. But they were magnificent in their preparation and concentration, and the display of good sportsmanship was an absolute pleasure to behold.

That in itself would have been enough to make all of us so proud of them.

But after all was said and done, after we were moving on to the next division, something was going on in the barn.

I returned briefly for something I forgot and there, in the aisle, were three young competitors, sweeping the barn with all manner of enthusiasm. I was quite taken aback and probably did not express my appreciation quite to the extent that I should have. Thankfully, this did not seem to dampen their enthusiasm at all. (I regret I didn’t snap a quick picture…)

When I returned later in the afternoon, after the youngest competitors had headed home, I found that it was not only the top aisle of the barn that had been beautifully swept. A mop had also been strategically dragged around in the lounge as well.

Respect for the horses and the sport?


In the process, not only did they make my day, they also more than earned my respect too.

Thanks very much to my ‘secret’ sweepers!