Mail-Order Horse

To me, the most interesting part about Milton is that I BOUGHT A HORSE [Meet Milton]. From a narrative point of view, the most interesting part is that I had never seen him. Nope, didn’t go look at. Nope, didn’t ride. Wasn’t even in the same country when I bought him.


For the last two years, writer, blogger, & author Karen Briggs (may her animals be always sleek & shiny) has been operating as my Horse Hunt Fairy Godmother, “Someone I trust to help me sort through the online ads & videos. And whack me over the head with her magic wand should I become overly whiny and obstreperous.” [Progress #1]

She’d find horses and send me links. I’d find horses and ask for her opinion. She kept saying, Come to Canada. We have nice horses. Come to Canada. The prices are not insane.

Finally, Karen (may all her jumping rounds be fault-free) told me she found a horse owned by a friend of hers, Linda Plank of Sprucehaven Farm in southwest Ontario. Since Karen (may writing assignments shower down on her) is an award-winning freelance writer, her emails are always amusing and eloquent. This one radiated an undertone of, You want nice horse? I found you nice horse. Now shit or get off the pot.

So I did.

Of course there was more to it than that. Photos. Videos. Karen (may her horses stay sound the day before big competitions) drove three hours one-way to Sprucehaven to sit on Milton [Teaser 1]. Red flags failed to appear. I pondered. I waffled.

I have notebook pages of pro and con. The cons you can imagine. As for pros, among others, going to try the horse would cost a significant fraction of the purchase. She was right about the prices. Then, I tried Rodney three times, including in a dressage clinic. Look what good that did me. Plus, we weren’t finding quality horses. Trainers would shut me down over the phone. If I didn’t do this, I didn’t see a useful way forward. Basically, nothing I was doing was working.

Maybe I just wanted to be the sort of person who makes the dramatic gesture. For once in my life.

Tomorrow: Shipping Milton
Gratuitous Balloon Photo from a reader in upstate New York.
“Much ballooning around here, especially in the fall. We saw three others from a distance but this one was right along the road.”


8 thoughts on “Mail-Order Horse

  1. Yay! Sarah and I think he looks sweet. I bet you won’t leave the house for a while now.

  2. I’m glad you spent so much time just looking. I’ve met a number if horse owners who did not get the horse they wanted, and put the horse up for sale soon after the purchase. A shame. Milton is lucky , even if he did have to move to a new country.

  3. Please tell me that Karen likes finding horses for people and she would be game to send one my way. šŸ™‚ Toronto is a pretty quick plane ride from Chicago (my other home–i.e., parents).

    1. LOVE spending other people’s money. Would prefer, of course, to hoard them all for myself, but more mouths to feed around here not currently a good idea …. horse-shopping for others, therefore, the next best thing. So yes, Susan, feel free to get in touch if you’re serious … I’m no big-time broker, just like a nice, athletic horse (especially if its talents lean towards eventing), and I do know a few people in the Toronto area, where the BNRs tend to congregate. Occasionally, a plan comes together nicely.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: