Monday, January 10, 2011

Alexandre has a new family.

One of my favorite pics in Glacier National Park where we led trail rides for a season.

Alexandre officially has a new family today though they've been leasing him since summer. Kerstin, Jens, and their daughter Sharon have won over Alexandre's heart with love, cookies, and trail rides. I was initially not sure how a lease situation would work out since I'm pretty much the only one that's ridden him (with some exceptions- thank you Karlin and a few others) in the past 11 years and he is VERY particular about which humans are allowed in his space. Very, very particular.

We decided to give at a try and throughout the summer Alexandre went on a trail ride almost every day, sometimes two. They rode him. Friends and relatives from Germany showed up and rode him. Exchange students rode him. Everyone loved him, but how could you not? He is gorgeous and huge and impressive and has good manners. He has 11 years of semi-professional-ish training. He loves trail rides and walks along on a loose rein, interested in his surroundings and happy to be alive.

About mid-summer they asked if I would sell him and my immediate answer was "no." I didn't even hesitate. Too many memories, too many hurdles hurdled, too much trust build up between us. Too many horror stories of horses ending up in bad situations after they're sold. Even though it was a perfect situation for my 18-year-old guy. Even though I didn't have time for him and he is waaaaaaaay too good of a horse to be retired in a pasture somewhere. Even though he would be staying at the same barn as Jasper and I could still see him everyday and could take him out on a ride every now and then.

Then one day they pulled up and as they were getting out of the car he nickered to them. He doesn't really nicker, but makes a "huh huh huh huh huh" sound like a Harley motorcycle starting up. He was theirs already. We talked logistics and they wanted to continue to ride him and would then eventually retire him. They are in the process of buying a house practically next to the barn with 20 acres that can be fenced. They are willing to make payments on him even though he pulled a tendon and is on 3 months stall rest.

So. It was not an easy decision. I battled with it for a long time, but he is going to an awesome, loving family and it really is the perfect situation for him. There is a right of first refusal in the contract, so if anything goes awry he will come back to me. Man, it is hard to give up that last little bit of control though. Lots of big life changes for me lately. I'm glad this is a positive one even if it's brought a few tears. So here's to his new official family, congratulations on being Alexandre's new caretakers. He is truly an amazing horse and I know he will continue to bring you joy and many, many memories.

More about Alexandre

11 comments:

Barbara said...

That is hard to do. Sounds like a great situation, hope everyone lives happily ever after.

achieve1dream said...

Aww. Sniff. I think I'm going to cry. It does sound like he chose them though. That's so cool that he nickered to them. They must all be so ecstatic to have such an amazing horse. That was really sweet of you to let them buy him even though it must be so difficult for you. I still miss my mare and it's going on four years, but I don't get to see her much. At least you still get to see him. :)

EvenSong said...

I love both of your photos! The first one looks so perfect, on might think it was photo shopped! The one at the end is just so sweet.
I'm glad you'll be able to "keep in touch" with your big-ear boy.
How's Jasper doing? And your dad?

Albigears said...

Yeah, right now he is in the stall next to Jasper, so when I go in the barn both of them have their heads over their stall doors looking at me expectantly. In the winter they are almost exactly the same color of bay with light brown noses. That's about where the similarities end though. I know I was ecstatic to have such an amazing horse! I couldn't take him anywhere without dozens people asking about him.

Jasper is healing nicely and is being a super good sport about it. He, who throws a hissy fit when I pull a scab off has stood absolutely still when I stick a syringe up in his wound to irrigate it. He doesn't move when I wash and clean up his leg and lets me give him antibiotics twice a day.

My dad is doing OK. He's probably going to be moving from the rehab center to a nursing home this week. I just wish he could talk so we could know what he wants/needs.

Kate said...

Sounds like it's hard but right - it sounds like a very good situation for him.

BritnieAnn said...

Aw, that is a WONDERFUL family he is with now! And being close to you is awesome.

So sorry to hear about your mare, you had such a great life with her!

Hope Jasper is all healed up soon!!

BobbieNoSocks said...

GREAT photos!

Monica said...

I was in the same situation with my first horse. She was 20 when I gave her to a family with 2 little girls who spoiled her rotten and continued to give her a job when I could not. It was hard,but the right choice! I think your guy will live happily ever after.
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Rising Rainbow said...

Wow, that's a hard one. I have an older gelding here that I love. We have been through a lot and I would hate to part with him but I would in the right circumstances. Sounds like that's what you found for your horse. That is really cool.

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Merri said...

beautiful photo! and that's so great he found his other people. so nice to hear stories where horses go to a good home.
- The Equestrian Vagabond