What in the world is a Horseman?
My blog is titled A Horseman’s Wife. That’s what I am. A Horseman’s Wife.
So…what is a horseman?
Wait a minute, if he wears a cowboy hat and rides a horse. Isn’t that a cowboy? Want the short answer? No. There’s a long list of titles when it comes to those who work cattle, rope and ride horses and that’s another post all in itself.
A Horseman feels called to the horses more than anything else. Devotes his life to soaking up as much knowledge as he can and really getting to know the horse. Yes, he works cattle, yes in most cases, he ropes, but his true love will always be the horse. (Now I’m positive the girls and I come before the horses to my horseman but they’re hot on our heels on the priority list. We gotta keep bringin’ our A game.)
There’s definitely a romance to it all.
And it’s really something to watch my horseman work with a tough horse and then experience a breakthrough. Or to help a struggling rider and see that light in their eyes and the grin on their face when they finally feel a change in their horse.
When Clint teaches a horsemanship clinic, many riders are in awe of how “with the horse” he is. And that’s true, God gave him a gift, no doubt. A gift for being able to know just what a horse needs and a gift for teaching it as well.
You could call it a gift or a passion or an obsession…
Let me tell you a little bit about life with a horseman.
A horseman can rarely answer a question about horses without launching into a detailed monologue. Now mind you, they don’t mean to be so long winded, there’s just too much to say on the subject to short change you. So consider yourself warned – do not attempt to chit chat with a horseman about horses. They don’t understand “surface talk” on this subject – it gets deep. Fast.
They use words and phrases like, “get with him”, “release for the thought”, “soften”, “break loose”, “open up”, “throw it away” and “let him soak on that”. Or they answer a question with a question. “Well, why do you think he did that?” “What could you do to help him before that happens next time?” It’s all quite philosophical.
Clint comes home after riding somewhere around 10 horses in a day and makes notes for the next day. He watches videos when he’s trying something new or has a horse that’s stumping him. Or simply because he has the remote in his hand.
We shoot videos occasionally to answer a question from someone. When we finally sit down to edit, usually on into the evening, I’ll ask Clint to watch a few clips to decide what parts he likes best to illustrate his point. “Oooo, see how the horse really got it that time? See his facial expression? That’s good stuff right there! Let’s watch that again, want to?”
Oh, sure I want to. Of course I want to. Let’s definitely watch it again.
Before he goes to sleep, Clint may have “just one more thing” he wants to go over about a horse that day. He has a heck of a time turning it off.
I’m pretty sure he dreams of thundering hooves at night.
He’s forever rearranging things down at the barn to be the most efficient in working a horse. Colts cross over a tarp and pass through tires with pool noodles in order to get to the round pen for the day’s ride. This list could go on. And probably by the time I post this things at the barn will have changed again.
A horseman, a true horseman, notices everything about you and your horse. But he’ll be quiet (because probably, hopefully, he has learned to wait until you ask for his help) as he watches your horse walk all over you or not stand while you get on or refuse to get in the trailer.
Don’t be mistaken though, he noticed. He’ll do his best to hold his tongue unless you request assistance.
But he may be dying a little inside.
So now that you know what a horseman is, keep your eye out for them. They’re not hard to spot if you know what to look for. But before you engage with one, be ready. Their brains work a little differently than the rest of us