[bactttoma] From Steven Taylor. My best short story. The fantastic horse ride.

  • From: taylor family <steven_taylor10@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: bactttoma@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 5 May 2010 16:41:04 +1000

From Steven Taylor.

I hate to boast, but this story earnt me an award for encouragement in writing 

It was written in my 4th year at High School.

I promise you this story is clean.

The Fantastic Horse Ride.

Her name was ashes.  A beautiful smoky black horse with a lovely coat of hair, 
silky to my touch.

From the minute I approached her she knew I was different.  She knew I was 
blind.  I can't explain this, I just know she knew I was blind.

Mr. Porter was the activity officer.

"Careful Steven, we will walk slowly to approach her.  This way"

I fooled his directions.  She stood there without moving.  

"Gently put out your hand and put it on her side Steven"

Again I followed Mr. Porter's directions.  Mr. Porter was my favourite activity 
officer.  I always knew him as Mr. Porter.

I put my hand on ashes's side.  Again she made no attempt to move or throw my 
hand off.

Mr. Porter gave me a piece of apple and gently showed me how to feed her this 

Ashes took it as gently as possible, and I did exactly what Mr. Porter said.

After following his directions some more, I was eventually in the saddle and he 
brought over his horse snaz who was grey and white.

He mounted his horse and gave me the reins of ashes.

Then he tied a rope between the 2 sets of reins.

The rest of the students were already mounted and were ready to ride.

I had all my safety gear on, my helmet and shoes and I was now ready to ride.

"Give her a slight kick"  Mr Porter was saying.

Not wanting to do ashes serious injury or to frighten her, I kicked gently and 
she responded immediately.

The ride began with Mr. Porter and I leading at the front of the rest of the 
students, with Mrs.  Smith at the rear telling slow goers to get their horses 

There were 4 teachers with us and some parents as well.  My Mum and Dad 
couldn't come, Dad was sick and Mum was looking after him.  Dad had a bad cold.

We rode off and Mr. Porter told me we were heading north along a trail.

After about half an hour, the teachers wanted us to get the horses to trot 
because we were all going far to slow.

After another gentle kick, we got the horses trotting.  I wasn't scared in the 
least.  I found myself wanting to make my horse gallop.

We walked and trotted the horses until it was time for lunch under a set of 

The weather was nice and warm and sunny.

We tied our horses up and the horses ate grass.  Mr. Porter tied my horse up, I 
was no good at tying knots.

After we were well refreshed with nice sandwiches and a variety of juice drinks 
and water, and after we had given the horses water to drink from a nearby 
stream we got ready to ride again.

The stream was lovely to listen too and so were all of the birds.  I was sure I 
heard sparrows, crows, and maybe even a pigeon.  I asked Mr. Porter what birds 
were around and he told me I was right at least with the sparrows and the crows.

We started on our way again.

About half an hour before the end of the day, I got my wish.

The teachers were telling us to really hurry the horses up.

"Get ready to gallop Steven"

I was ready.

We got the horses galloping and occasionally had to give them a gentle nudge 
with our feet to keep them going.

But my mind was lost.

I was in the Melbourne cup and I was a famous jockey.

My horses name was Pharlap now and my horse was winning.

The crowd was screaming, the noise of horses was tremendously loud and the 
other horses were gaining on me.

A broad smile with a look of concentration was on my face.

"Come on Pharlap.  Come on we can do this"  I was saying but only in my mind.

And sure enough ashes galloped and Mr. Porter was saying the rope had broken 
but I was not to worry, he had one eye on me and one eye looking where he was 

My mind was racing now.  There was one horse so close to Pharlap who looked 
like it would steal the race from us.

"Giddy up boy, not far to go now"  again I was saying this in my mind.

But the time was drawing to a close, the cabins were now in view.  I heard 
students muttering their cheers.

Sadly, we were now being told to slow down our horses, but it wasn't sad for me.

My mind was filled with the picture.

Pharlap with Steven Taylor the first ever blind jockey ever in racing history 
has won the Melbourne cup.  Dad was right.  I could really live history after 

I was famous.  I would be remembered forever.

"Stop day dreaming Steven"  the reality of Mr. Porter's voice suddenly 
penetrated my dreamy mind.

We were their at last but there was work to be done.

We had to feed the horses, make sure they were watered, and then we had to 
brush them and remove the saddles.

Worse still tomorrow we were going home.  

"Goodbye ashes"  I said at the end of all of the work.

Ashes made a panting noise.  I took this as her way of saying goodbye.

As I lay in my bed that night, the pictures of the most famous blind jockey in 
Australian or world history filled my mind and then there was Sandra kissing me 
and saying well done.

Steven Taylor.

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