I’ve been reading, “Tom Dorrance More Than a Horseman” by Margaret Dorrance and John Saint Ryan. It’s a collection of rememberances from people that Tom influenced over the years. It’s an excellent read because it’s real people speaking from the heart about a man they admired. I’d recommend it to anyone that wants to gain some insight into the genius of Tom with horses and people.
In many of the stories, time was mentioned as something that was really important to Tom and the horse. If you were on a schedule, Tom wasn’t your guy. I thought about that some yesterday while Amy and I were working with some young horses. I know I’m prejudice but, I think Amy is a genius in many respects too. She has us working with these three young horses together at the end of the day when we have no scheduling pressures. It’s amazing to me how well horses respond to a human who is trying to offer it a good deal when time isn’t a factor. You’ve probably heard that the fastest way to get some things is to slow down. Amy’s Dad would admonish us young folks about that when working with cattle at the ranch and I read that same advice several times in the book. Anyway, without time pressure, we had these colts saddled, moved around a little until they could travel well with the saddle and in a group, did a little ground work to check out the freedom of their feet, put snaffles on for the first time and rode them around in the snaffle. We got to a place where the horses were all comfortable and hunting us up in the saddle, stepped off and reversed the bridling saddling process. It all went smooth as silk and I noticed a big change in the horses confidence in Amy and I when we were done. I don’t know how long we were at it. I don’t care. Neither would Tom or any horse I’ve known. Something to think about in our “time sensitive” society. Maybe that’s one of the really attractive things about true horsemanship? Have a great day spending time with your horses!