Feature Friday: Horseback Riding at Pipestem Resort

Feature Friday: Horseback Riding at Pipestem Resort

This morning, I went horseback riding at Pipestem Resort State Park in West Virginia. The adventure started with the drive from where I’m staying in Asbury, WV around mountain-like hills through a couple of pint-sized towns to unincorporated area of Pipestem. The drive reminded me a little of when I drove up Beech Mountain, North Carolina a few years back for a ski trip. Once we (my coworker and I) arrived at the park, I thought my nerves would kick in, but I was evermore excited.

We went into the stables (until the smell overwhelmed us) and watched as the horses of various colors (rich browns, black, white, a peculiar gray) were tended to. Finally, we met our horses. My coworker got a horse named Tom, and I got the lovely Molly, who was silky black with a black and auburn streaked mane. My yoga came in handy as I managed to get my leg high enough in the air to get my foot in the stirrup to hoist myself onto Molly’s back. Yep, I’m proud to have not needed a step stool!

As Molly and I started our journey on a path she’s travelled who knows how many times, I wondered to myself if she cares about carrying folks on her back every day. I also noticed that while Molly was pretty easy to “steer,” pulling her left, right, and telling her to slow down or stop for a second, she definitely did things on her own terms, stopping to eat flowers when she pleased, but never veering off path or causing us to be left behind. I rode Molly through wooded areas and through meadow like areas, noticing how Molly took care in her steps when the trail was on a decline or when it was rocky.

As I enjoyed the view, the peace, and the quiet, I took some time to be one with my own thoughts. I remembered when my granddaddy P.H. had horses, a time when he was a strong man with authority and leadership oozing through his pores. I remembered when my cousin Billequa and I rode camels at the Jackson Zoo as kids. I daydreamed about the possibility of ever owning a horse like Molly. I thought about my relationship and where it’s going. I thought about my parents and how they’ve been everpresent in my life. It was definitely a thoughtful morning.

The only gross part was when the horse in front of me pooped… Wasn’t really ready for that, but it’s a part of life, yes, I know. Also, the whiff of poop every time we went through or around piles of it was a drag.

Overall, though, it was a delightful, relaxing, awesome experience. If there’s a stable near you (or if you ever happen to find yourself in southern W. Va.), try horseback riding if you never have. Happy Friday, folks!

P.S. I will add pictures when I get to a computer!

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life is short. are you living it?

life is short. are you living it?

I found out today that someone I knew in college passed away. It reminded me, yet again, that life is short and not promised. So the natural next thought in my ongoing stream of consciousness is wondering if I’m doing what’s meant for me. Do I have the right people around me? Am I taking the risks I need to take to succeed or those I need to take to be happy? Am I leaving the mark I want to leave on this earth?

I think so. I’m in a place of unbelievable possibility, intentional activity, and high expectations for awesomeness. I’m somewhat content with where I am, while taking deliberate steps to continue growing and moving forward. How bout you? Are you living today and not just planning to live tomorrow?

If not, start right now. Tomorrow might never become today.

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