Sunday, December 9, 2012

The horses of Washington D.C.

In the spring of my senior year, my sister and I and a group of our classmates traveled to Washington DC to take part in the Close Up Washington DC program.
The bulk of our week was spent visiting the usual Washington sites.  These included lots of government buildings and monuments, 
a couple different embassies, 
and, of course, the Smithsonian. 
Although I went to a very small high school, there was one girl on the trip that I really hadn't met prior to our week in Washington D.C.  This was a highly unfortunate because Janie was every bit as horsey as me.  It wasn't long before we were discussing the merits of every single equestrian statue and plotting ways to spend our free day on horseback.
We asked our program instructor if he knew of a place where we might be able to ride.  He laughed and told us that he had no idea.  He'd been with Close Up nearly a year, and we were the first people to ask about riding.  Usually most of the students spent their free day shopping in Georgetown.
Janie and I really didn't want to go shopping.  Everywhere we went, we asked people if they knew of a place where we could go riding.  Finally, a policeman steered us to the Rock Creek Park Horse Center.
Our free day came and we made our way to Rock Creek Park.
We signed up to take an hour long trail ride.
Janie's horse was a very cute but very stubborn gelding named Coffee.
My horse, Merlin, was a lot less cute but he had some get up and go.  Plus, he was a pacer.
To date, this is the only rental stable I've ever been to that used English saddles. 
Although I didn't have a very good high school experience overall, the week I spent in Washington D.C. with the Close Up program was one of the best weeks of my entire life.  That wasn't all because of the horses of Rock Creek Park, but they certainly contributed!

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