I never understood how a hobby could become a passion until I met Charlie.
Charlie was a riding school horse and from the riding schools point of view was probably one of the best horses they had. He was sensible enough to put the flapping beginners on but put an experienced rider on him and the sky was the limit. I fell in love with him the moment I met him. A pastel pink my little pony with a heart of gold. He was the type of horse that you had to tell him when he had done enough because he would have rode himself into the ground to please you.
I became his proud owner on the 23rd March 2002. He was my first horse and I couldnt have been happier. It took a while for him to realise that we were now a permanent team and that not everyone rode him but when that clicked he was my permanent shadow. His loyalty to me never wavered. I remember going to catch him in the field and there was a very dominant gelding in the field. This gelding charged at me and my mum, rearing in front of us. Charlie ran in front of us and stood there until the gelding ran off. Charlie was completely non aggressive but still risked himself to protect us.
I like to think that me and Charlie achieved more as a team than we ever would seperately. We went to shows and pleasure rides despite not always winning, we always had the time of our life.
I had 11 amazing years with Charlie. Unfortunately on the 20th September 2013. I had to make the heart breaking decision to have Charlie put to sleep. He'd injured his stifle in the field and his pain could no longer be managed. He was my best friend and I made the decision that he deserved to run free again, pain free. I was there with him at the end as he had been with me at the beginning.
It has taken me 2 years to pluck up the courage to open the box and send off his hair but I'm so pleased I did. I will wear my beautiful necklace with pride as an amazing tribute to my perfect my little pony. Thank you.
Rachel October 2015