Sorry that it has been so long since my last post, getting back home has been a welcome relief and a hectic struggle. When I last entered here I was on my way home. Having tried every avenue to get the mares shipped home for New Jersey on a transport truck I was once again amazed and brought to tears by the kindness of the people I encountered on my trip.
The first leg was to haul to Pennsylvania and that was done by Mare and Claudia, the wonderful woman I stayed with in New Jersey and her friend, the fantastic woman that stopped on the side of the road and found me my last place to stay on the journey. Personally, I think that Richard and Mare were worried I might get them eating steak before I headed home so they hauled me out of the "I'm a bad influence" zone. Just kidding, they were a wonderful couple to stay with at the end of my and the girls trip, all of us were taken such excellent care of and the girls were sad to leave. Claudia and Mare loaded us up and hauled us to PA, where we stayed with Molly and her family, and I am still amazed that Kevin gave up his bedroom for me, what a guy! We stayed there, me with M and K and the girls across the street at the same farm we stayed at on our trip out, Mike is a kind and generous soul. Then it was on, we were picked up at Molly's by Lori W. taken to Ohio to meet our next ride, husband and wife team Janet and Phil, who took us across Ohio and into Indiana where we managed to reach our next destination by making only left turns. Not really, long story, but they did get me to Star and Roger's where we stayed the night. The next morning, in light to medium snow fall, and after another enjoyable cowboy breakfast with Star, Roger and some of their friends, Star hauled us to Illinois to drop us off at Hanna City where we stayed for 2 nights before getting hauled to Nebraska and picked up by our first total stranger, Tammy, who took us to her house after treating me to my first Runsa, an interesting type of sandwich if I do say so myself. The next evening we were hauled to Hastings to stay with Joni M., where once again I was stuck.
I called everyone I could think of and couldn't get a ride for the girls across Wyoming, half the people I tried were out of town and the other half had no access to rigs. When I was on the verge of just saddling up and riding the last 1500 miles, it was once again my dear friend Joel to the rescue, he offered to cover the difference of what had been donated by all the Wildride followers to pay to have the girls shipped home. I sent out requests for quotes to all the shippers I could find and Barb and Randy Ruhlman stepped up. They offered to take the girls home for less than half of what the rest of the quotes were. I was ecstatic. New vet certificates and coggins were gotten, paperwork was taken care of, I transferred the donations to Joel and he paid the entire shipping bill. That all being done, I booked a flight out of Kearney NE the next afternoon and breathed a huge sigh of relief. I would be leaving the girls for the first time this trip, but Joni was a wonderful woman and I knew she would care for them as well or better than I would.
The next morning, all was set and I was taken to the airport by a friend of Joni's and on my way home. I was both relieved and anxious, I knew I wouldn't be able to relax fully until the mares were safely home. I was met at the airport by my friend Alexis and the next morning was out to see my heart, Strip. I had missed her more than I could imagine and was very happy that I was alone in the barn as tears flowed freely when I stood next to her hugging her tightly.
I have been through a lot on this journey, and realized much about myself, and more importantly regained my faith in the total kindness of people. This trip could never have happened without all their help, so to each and everyone of you I say thank you. It seems to be so little to say, but every time I think of you, my eyes fill with tears and I smile, you are all amazing and I am blessed to have been given the opportunity to meet you. I hope that all of your dreams come true and that you all of the chance to take your own journey.
Now I am working on my book, this is a difficult process as I am not settled in to my own space. Currently I am staying with my father and stepmother and they have provided me with a peaceful and calm place to write. I am trying to ignore the stress I have, rebuilding my business, worrying about money, but that is nothing anyone else isn't doing, so I take heart in the fact that I am not alone and I know that there are others out there rooting for me, and that gives me the strength and determination to continue.