It seemed so unfair. I had earned much of the money in that account. But since it was in both mine and my parents names I had no access to it unless they signed off on it. I decided I'd open my own checking account as soon as possible, but that didn't help me in my current situation. I needed that money now.
So I started bargaining with my dad. His argument was that I didn't have a horse, so I didn't need a saddle. When I explained the situation of the borrowed saddle, he said that Blair should borrow another one or buy one herself. I knew that wasn't going to happen, so I just kept at it. Then I had an idea. I said that I'd take out the money and then put $50 a month into the account until it was paid back. He considered this for a few days, and then, an amazing thing happened.
My dad let me use the money.
So I ran down to the tack store and bought my first saddle. And I still have it.
It's a Crosby Mark VI all purpose saddle. In general I think that Crosby is a good brand - well constructed and nice, quality leather. However, right now the saddle needs a bit of TLC. While I was always pretty good about cleaning tack, I wasn't nearly as militant about it was I am now, so when I put the saddle away the last time I didn't completely clean and condition it. I just zippered it inside it's saddle cover and put it in the tack trunk in the basement. And didn't think about it for years. When I pulled it out to take this picture, I saw that it had some mold on the panels underneath. The mold stained the leather, which is a huge bummer. Structurally the saddle is fine, and I don't think the mold stains will be visible when it is sitting on a horse, but it's still a bit sad considering all I went through to get it and how much I used it. I've already cleaned and conditioned it thoroughly and I'm going to try and remember to pull it out a few times a year and re-apply the conditioner (which is supposed to inhibit mold growth as well as keeping the leather supple).
I love this saddle and I think it really held up nicely considering all of the hours I spent riding it it. I did end up showing Teeya in the saddle, but only for a year. Shortly thereafter I bought my first horse, Tyler, and used it on him. It was the saddle that I used to break Kaswyn, and we've showed many hunter pleasure classes using it.
But then we made the change to dressage. I tried to use my trusty Crosby, but my trainer strongly suggested that I find a dressage saddle in order to get me in the proper position. So after almost ten years of being a one-saddle rider, I found myself in the market for another saddle.
To be continued...