Step 1: Accidentally Discover Horse
After work, pour yourself a glass of wine and casually say, “I’m going to look at the new photo ads on Dreamhorse, just to see what’s there.” Open every ad that has a horse under 10k and over 16 hands. Glance over each with little interest until you see a video of a sport-bred chestnut Thoroughbred that floats across the ground like a fairy. Prevent eyes from bugging out of your head as you glance at his price tag. Watch video 20 more times.
Step 2: Enabling
Send video of floating chestnut Thoroughbred to your friend who you know will say you have to buy it. Experience flutter of happiness in your chest when you read the text message from her saying, “Love. So cute. You have to buy it.” Send video to your other friend and become emboldened when she says the same thing. Send video to three other friends. Drink a glass of wine and send video to your trainer, with the response being, “Cute. Are you looking for another horse?” Act as if this horse was forced upon you and respond, “Well, no, but just LOOK at him and look at the price. How can I not? Do you have a stall?” Hold breath while waiting for response from trainer and feel heart leap when she says, “Yes, we have a stall.”
Step 3: Rationalizing
Tell husband that you crunched the numbers, and you will half-lease out Callie just in case, but that you can make it work. Also add in the meaningless, “And we can always flip him and sell him for more than I bought him for if it doesn’t work out,” just so you sound responsible. Give husband huge hug and kiss when he tells you to go for it, that he really loves having horses in his life, and he trusts you. Make note to yourself that you won the husband lottery. Drink a glass of wine.
Step 4: Communication
Call floating Thoroughbred owner and discuss his natural horsemanship slow start and his great breeding. Listen to story of why she’s decided to sell and empathize, saying that you’ve been where she is, and he’ll be going to a wonderful home. Call trainer of floating Thoroughbred and talk about his good brain and willing demeanor. Learn he only has about 30 days under saddle on him. Call your trainer and rehash all of the conversations above. Call your enabling friends and re-rehash all of the conversations above. Drink a glass of wine and tell yourself, “I am ready for this. I am ready for a baby horse.”
Step 5: Vetting
Call a vet local to the floating Thoroughbred and order up a standard pre-purchase exam along with a set of radiographs. Facetime with the owner, and watch Thoroughbred be a perfect gentleman for his very first set of flexions and X-rays. Get report and show it to both of your local vets to make sure that all lights are green. Drink a glass of wine as you wait for each vet to call. Contain elation as both of them give you the green light.
Step 6: Drink A Glass Of Wine
Drink a glass of wine.
Step 7: Make It Official
Call floating Thoroughbred owner and say, “I would love to purchase your little horse.” PayPal owner purchase price. Marvel at how only four days earlier, you weren’t even considering getting another horse. Pour yourself a glass of wine, boot up your computer, and head over to eBay so you can start purchasing things for your new floating Thoroughbred. Tell yourself, “I already have almost everything I need for him.” See cute cooler that your new Thoroughbred cannot live without. Add it to your Watch List.
Step 8: Celebrate
When husband comes in from working on bikes in the garage, tell him you’ve sealed the deal. Tell him that he can name the new Thoroughbred if he would like, since it will really be a horse for you both, not just for you. Smile as he says, “Quill. I’d like to name him Quill.” Think how Quill is a perfect name for the little floating Thoroughbred. Pour two glasses of wine and toast to the new upcoming adventures Quill will bring to your lives.
Sophie Coffey grew up riding by the seat of her pants in Virginia hunt country, and she took a flying leap into the top levels of the sport through sheer will and luck after a cold call landed her a job at Hunterdon, Inc. She continued freelancing as a jack-of-all-trades through her 20s for some of the top names in the industry, getting the best education possible in horsemanship and larger life lessons. After leaving the sport to pursue a career in marketing, she returned in 2018 as an adult amateur with a little APHA mare named Callie, who has a passionate love of peppermints and jumping with her knees to her eyeballs. She resides with her increasingly horsey husband and three cats in Boulder, Colorado.