Charyl was the proud owner Gabe for nearly twenty-four years and in those years he mellowed from a four year old who would try to bite and kick to a steady steed for a trail ride. He was big and stubborn sometimes, but you could read in his eyes that he was just teasing. And when on the trial, he was ever the gentleman, tending to business and making sure that his rider was safe and secure. And he loved birthday's and that special present he was always given. Nothing excited him like his annual large slice of carrot cake with a Mountain Dew chaser. He would smack his lips and close his eyes, letting you know that he was savoring all the sugar he could get and making it last as long as he could.
Now I never knew much about horses before meeting my wife who I sometimes affectionately call "The Horse Lady", but I learned to truly love these big, beautiful creatures and the power and grace they represent. And of all of the horses that have been in our life together, none touched me more than Gabriel. Being the oldest member of our herd, this giant gelding and I had a special relationship. We were the two in the family in the Medicare age bracket and we reminisced without even speaking about the daily aches and pains of aging and why it was so important for us old guys to stick together. I will miss very much those times in the barn, or when walking him in or out, where we were truly in sync in wavelength if not in speech. I think we could truly read each other's minds.
As for my wife, she was off for the day but, after having to handle Gabe's final arrangements, she decide she would go to work. She needed something to keep her busy and her mind off Gabe all day. That makes a lot of sense, for after twenty-four years it is hard to say goodbye. But having been through similar heartbreaks before, she'll bounce back quickly. After all, life is for the living, but the memories of those that we have loved and lost, last for a lifetime. And dear Gabe knew right to the end that she loved him dearly.
Now Gabe has gone to a much better place. He's crossed the rainbow bridge into a beautiful sunny pasture where his buddies who proceeding him, be they horses, dogs or cats, are waiting to renew their acquaintance. And as for "The Horse Lady" and me, well, we'll see Gabe again with the rest of them when our time here is done.
Happy munching and crunching, Gabe, in that heavenly pasture where you've probably already arrived. You'll never run out of fresh, green grass and you can't eat too much. And, just think, now you can run and frolic just like the days gone by and never suffer pain, and we'll never forget you, Old Boy. Gabriel: One of God's gracious gifts to we humans below.