Friday, July 24, 2009


When I was a little girl, I grew up riding this old ranch horse named Pilot.  My mom didn't believe in using saddles.  She felt that riding bareback would teach me better balance and help me develop a feel for the horse.  When I turned eleven (I think), she decided I needed to start 4-H.  My parents then decided that Pilot was not suitable for a 4-H horse, so we began horse shopping.

Answering an ad in the Bargain Finder led us to my first 4-H horse Haida and a lady named Lorretta.  Lorretta ran a riding academy that catered mostly to children.  In my white bread world Lorretta was this foreign and exotic creature who held me in awe.  You see, Lorretta had emigrated from Iran and would tell these marvelous stories of her childhood there.  I would go there for lessons on Haida.  (Haida had bucked me off promptly the first time I rode her at home.)  My summer days were filled with Lorretta's love, with a side of learning.  This lady was generous and big hearted.  I remember one day asking my mom why on earth she left Iran.  My mom's terse reply was something along the lines of "They aren't nice to different people there."  

It took me many years before I understood she left in order to live.  I had not thought of Lorretta in years but yesterday I started reading this book called Prisoner of Tehran: A Memoir by Marina Nemat (ISBN:13: 978-0-14-305217-3).  The book is about a woman who spent part of her childhood being held as a political prisoner.  Her story is one of hope and resilience. It's moving and well written and made me realize just how amazing Lorretta is to have left the environment she did to create a new life for herself here in Canada.  

If you're looking for a good read this summer I strongly recommend this book.


1 comment:

Adventures of a Horse Crazed Mind said...

thanks for the recommendation! It sounds like a read. I think we all have horses from our past that will mean a lot to us.