I was honored to be one of TRC’s first volunteers with the founder, David Allen. We only had one horse, Lena, a flea- bitten Arab mare, and just a couple of students. I will never forget my first day as a volunteer side walker when we put our first student on Lena and walked her around the stable. We did not have any arena access at that time. David asked the student to drop the reins and hold her arms out. When she did, a huge smile broke out on her face. I felt like I was the one on the horse and I was flying. Goosebumps everywhere. I was hooked.
I was working full-time so I could only be at the barn at night, and on Saturdays when I mucked Lena’s stall and groomed her. I served on the board for some time in the early years. I was a volunteer coordinator, and I contributed to the newsletter. I prepared and instructed the first volunteer trainings. To further my horse education, I took the instructor training at what was then the Joswick center in San Juan Capistrano.
Life and repeated shoulder injuries kept me away from the barn on and off for several years. I am now happy to serve again on the board, but I cannot in the arena.