True Beauty is an Inside Job
by Catherine Madera
A fun holiday activity is always the mystery gift exchange. Common at parties, this game usually involves many multi-colored packages being moved around a group of people who can decide to keep their gift or steal one that looks better. When the packages are finally opened and the contents revealed it is interesting to see which gifts match the appearance of the outer wrapping paper. Sometimes, plainly wrapped gifts turn out to be the most valuable.
The Bureau of Land Management will tell you that mustangs of flashy color and coat pattern are chosen first at adoptions. All those plain, brown horses are easily passed over. It’s a natural human tendency to be wowed by obvious beauty. I must admit, I would not have picked my 4-year-old mustang Mateo out of the crowd. He is a muddy bay color with minimal white. Nothing flashy about him.
Recently, while riding him down a wooded trail, I thought about outer packaging. This horse has not even been under saddle a year, but I easily ride him out alone. He is confidant, sensible, sure-footed, smart and funny. Two simple words that describe him? A pleasure. While riding, a familiar tune often played around the holidays came to mind: Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens; bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens; brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things…
Enjoy the magazine this month. It’s our always popular issue that honors special aged equine friends. And get to know the awesome people of Stonewater Ranch on page 6. This holiday season I hope you get to enjoy a few of your favorite things, as well as become acquainted with new ones that just might arrive in a “brown paper package.” Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally Published December 2014 Issue