Chapter 5

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•••1 month later•••

Mel's POV

I took my duffel bag back into my room and unpacked everything. I had just gotten back from Heather's fair, and I stayed with her in her camping trailer for a week and helped her during fair. I LOVE FAIR! I can't wait to be in it next year. Heather and Cloud did great in all of their classes, and her whole 4-H group did great, too.

I hung up shirts I didn't use (I always over pack for trips) and put my dirty clothes in my hamper. When I finished unpacking, I changed into riding clothes so I could take Cowboy out for a ride.

I walked out to the fields and grabbed Cowboy. It's weird, his name sounds western, but he's better at English than western. I was able to train him to be ridden western, and he's okay at it but he's better at English.

I'm so excited! The rescue horse camp starts on this coming Monday! It's Saturday, and my mom is in full out preparation mode. The bunkhouse is ready, the horses are ready, and we are ready. It's a good thing that the campers are coming, we have way too many horses that are filling both barns! Both barns!! We have 32 horses, 32 horses!!! We're having 12 campers, and each one will work with their 'own' horse. Luckily, there's a person who is adopting 6 of our horses that she's going to turn into cowponies for her dude ranch. Also, 3 others are getting adopted for a trail riding program. But, we're taking in another horse the day of the camp. So, we'll have 24 horses. That's a lot. Those are the first adoptions we've had for a month. A. Whole. Month. That doesn't sound like a long period, but in the rescue business, it's a while. We keep receiving horses, but they aren't getting adopted! If we get anymore, we might have to put some horses on a waiting list to come here or get people to foster them until we have room.

When Cowboy was all ready to be ridden, I put my helmet on and settled into the saddle. Once he was properly warmed up, we worked on timing our jumps. I set up a single trotting pole and we cantered over it a few times so I could work on timing. Cowboy's good at adjusting to the jump, which is really good. When our timing was better, we popped over a few 3' jumps and Cowboy was awesome! We easily flew over the jumps, and to cool out, we went on a new trail we made!

The trail was really cool. It went around a lake and through a meadow. It wasn't a trail that was in the forest, more out in the open. But it was still obvious that it was a trail. That's what made it so cool!

By the time I was back at the barn, the air became cooler and the sun was starting to set. I sighed. I was tired! I put Cowboy in his stall with his dinner, and checked in on all of the other horses. All 24 horses were good! I kissed Cowboy goodnight and headed inside the house.

I ate a light dinner cause I wasn't that hungry, and then showered and read a new Young Rider magazine. At 10:00, I climbed into bed and tried to go to sleep. I could not sleep though! I decided to be really quiet and listen to the sound of crickets, bugs, and our yard sprinklers. Ahh, nothing can beat the sound of sprinklers. Except maybe horse neighs. The sprinklers relax me and make me feel right at home, even though I am home. This is home. The horses, my room, the barn, the lake, the trails, and even the sprinklers. I'm glad
I'm home.


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