Tell me how old you are

Omg. I think I had a Borelli when I was a kid. I had forgotten that name until now.

I think that may have been the saddle that had the unfortunate tendency to have the leathers slide off the stirrup bars. Lol.


Hunt cap with elastic strap to hold it on. Jodhpur boots and jodhors, hunt coat with pony club tie.


In a family photo I’m in 5th grade sitting in my 18" (!!) Borelli saddle, on a rack in the laundry room, as I’m reading a book. I told my family that I was breaking it in. Really I just wanted to sit in the saddle. No horse? No problem! (That $50 almost-new saddle fit neither me nor the girl I sold it to, but who cared. The flaps were so forward that they were in another area code. A saddle was a saddle, right?)

I may or may not have been a person who headed to a show and if my coach hadn’t arrived yet and my class was called, well, I saved that day’s coaching fee. Blue-ribboned one time, too. If I were, in fact, that person.


I remember that a lot of the hunter jumps were solid, especially coops, walls and roll tops. There was a great deal of plywood consumption in those days.


I had a Borelli saddle too, in fact, I think I still have it and used it for training youngsters.

In my pre-teens, early teens:
A full set of shoes cost $15.00
Board was $60 a month, up from $30
Riding with no helmets, in shorts, and sneakers all over the trails

In my early 20s
Board was $250, really nice places like Gold Coast Equestrian was $600
Shoes were ~$60
I did eventing so 1 day 3 phase event was $60
Per class at local shows were $5.00
Elastic strap on helmet or no strap for dressage. Had a Caliente for cross country


We practiced in the spring, showed in the summer, fox hunted in the fall, and took winters off. All on the same horse of course.


My new Stubben Siegfried (the “it” saddle in its heyday) cost $240 in 1967.


The dream.
I’ll do a little in the winter, but pressure off would be nice.

Hunt caps with a real harnesses were certain to be the ruination of hunter showing.

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Those things were heavy! Jump crew duty was no fun. Lol.


Red check wool coolers that made your horse look like a small Italian restaurant. All he needed was a bottle of Chianti on his back.


I got criticized for keeping my snap out helmet harness ON for a flat class as a young teenager by a coach. I was supposed to remove that harness, and put the filler straps in which snuggled the helmet onto your head a bit, and looked oh so stylish! But I thought it was all pretty silly, so I didn’t do it. Safety first, you know. I’d been taught right at home when younger, the importance of safety while riding. At six years old, I always wore the cardboard based velvet hat with the stretched elastic under my chin. I thought that the snapped in harness a few years later was the epitome of safety standards. Fixed brim of course. Oh how the times have changed. Don’t know how I survived.


I am “Miller’s catalog, no chin strap, Harry Halls with the ankle zippers, full chaps, boot pulls, Dehner paddocks, PDN pancake saddle, Westropp overreach boots, Ulsters and navaho pads” old.

My 14yo daughter thought that my vintage boot pulls were hay hooks (bless her). Although, I did just get a pair of Dehner paddocks from Mary’s Tack & Feed and a new pair of custom full chaps. Best things ever.


Clovite and calf manna. To cure all lol


Dehner tall boots was a passport to the cool girls’ club at college. If you had Dehners you were in! Actually my off the rack tall boots got mistaken for Dehners because they fit like a custom (but were dirt cheap) and the head of the CGC passed me as I was coming back from the barn - Spud, I didn’t know you had Dehners. I just smiled and went on my way never bothering to correct her.


Yeah, CGC, I have Dehners. Right up your butt.

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And alfalfa molasses! All the school horses had metal trash cans in their stalls, filled with alfalfa molasses (A&M). They could snack on it at any time. It came in big burlap bags, made with a loose weave. If you didn’t store it properly, the contents would get hot and either ferment or mold.


Harry Halls! …


When sweet feed was the only grain you could buy.


My first saddle was a Hartley Galaxie – basically the poor man’s PDN. I paid $300 for it as it had been used about 3 times.

That was back when hunter classes jumped over an outside course!