Being raised on a ranch and cowboy, I have learned that there are two things that will stand the test of time: good friends and good saddles. Good friends are like good saddles, the more time you spend with both the better you feel.
Both can keep you falling off whether it’s horseback or just falling down. An ole saddle when properly cared for can stand the test of time and give you many hours of enjoyment, just like an ole friend- the two have so much in common.When you get a saddle broke in just right you can sit in it all day no matter the conditions. A saddle with its proper equine equipment attached, is there for the long haul. In all kinds of terrain and circumstances, you’ll always have something to hold on to in a storm or a wreck.
Well, an ole friend is the same. He will pick you up if you fall and stand by your side through thick and thin. Just like that ole saddle, he too will give you something to hold on to. In all conditions and all circumstances you can count on him to be there for you. Both may become a little worn at times and need some repair, whether it be stitching or mending, but with a little love they both are good companions.
However, one thing they don’t share is cost. A saddle may be a bit expensive, where as a friend is free- if you first become a friend to him. Money for a friend is unheard of where I grew up. You can buy a lot of things, but a true friend is not one of them.
Is there anything you need to have a friend? Yes. There is your word, your honor and your friendship in return. To have a saddle is not much good if you don’t own a horse or a mule to put it on. To have a saddle set empty in a saddle house is like not having any friends at all to share your life with. So what is more important a saddle or a friend? I think they both have equal value and if you have one, most of the time, at least in my life, the other came pretty soon thereafter.
I consider myself very lucky. I have one ole saddle that was my Dad’s and have more friends than I can count- and oh what a blessing it is to ride in or along side of each. I learned a lot of valuable lessons in life both in a saddle and with a friend, most of the time the two went hand in hand. My Dad once told me, “I had many a lesson in life taught to me in a saddle by a dear friend. There both good teachers.”
You may not have a saddle but I bet it’s safe to say you have friends. Just remember, with your saddle or with a friend, spend as much time as you can because it will make your life down the trail easier.