The Other Side


If you're a regular visitor here, then you probably know that instead of writing about the latest & greatest of the moment, I prefer to write from my heart about the other side of the moment ~ the quieter side. You also may or may not know that I write this blog from our home, in the heart of the Bluegrass ~ Lexington, Kentucky.
Man-O-War, Photo courtesy of The Kentucky Horse Park
Horses are my husband's business and the reason we are here ~ 
He comes from out west, Arizona to be exact. Raised in a horse loving family, he started early, mucking stalls, cleaning tack and riding Western on Porter saddles ~ made by his great-grandfather, Newton Porter.
Early morning on the back side with Barkley at Keeneland Most mornings he is on the other side, the barn side, with only one thing on his mind, helping horses to breathe easier. To have a healthy & happy horse though takes the dedication of many ~ Breeders, owners, trainers, jockeys, exercise riders, and grooms who always, always put the horse first.
The Amazing RAUL RODRIGUEZ never far from his best friend, California Chrome, await their turn to board the plane for Maryland. Photo | Barkley Porter
Speaking of…I love this photo that he snapped of groom Raul Rodriguez and his best friend, California Chrome ~ Taken after his Derby win, they were waiting to board the plane for the flight to Maryland.
Out of the limelight, on the other side, Raul is the private groom to California Chrome and plays a vital role in the daily health and well-being of this sweet & often smiling horse.
California Chrome after his Derby win waiting to board the plane for Maryland Photo | Barkley Porter
This morning I was reading the Twitter feed of Claire Novak who is the Online Features Editor at BloodHorse.com and I was moved by her wonderful video below. The short film beautifully documents my message about the vital role that Raul Rodriguez plays, out of all the limelight, on the other side, in the daily life of California Chrome.
 Claire Novak (@ClaireNovak) May 17, 2014
If you are unable to view this video on your mobile device, click here. I'd hate for you to miss it! 

After the video, I'd love to tell you a more personal story that I published 4 years ago about how lovingly these gentle animals give back. Our daughter will tell you, "There is nothing better than hearing a rider speak their first words while on horseback, or sharing the amazement of a student as they touch the soft nose of their equine partner for the very first time."
Read more of her story on The Quiet Side.
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Happy trails ~
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