by: Rebecca Taylor

Previously published by Perspectives Magazine

Howdy ya’ll, how are you all doing today? Me, I’m just back from an exhilarating day out on the range. I was out riding with my best friend Zeus, the appaloosa gelding who belongs to our master, Brett Harrison. Brett’s putting Zeus back in his stall right now, and then it will be time for him to clean me up again for the night. It’s important that I stay in good shape, because in doing so, Zeus and Brett stay safe. There is nothing better than the smell of fresh country air and a breeze brushing you with its breath. Today, we were out moving cattle into another pasture so they have more grass to graze on.

You might say, so what? You’re only a saddle. My answer for you is yes, I am a saddle, but I am also important. I help the Triple H Ranch run smoothly. Without me, Brett and Zeus wouldn’t be able to do their job securely. We have a relationship built on teamwork. Brett, Zeus and I make a great team because we are all skilled in our work. Knowing that I have a purpose makes me feel great. When Brett takes his place within me and his boots touch my stirrups, I know that we are prepared for the day.

I am thankful for having good, kind friends like Brett and Zeus and for having a job that is meaningful and exciting. My biggest fear would be losing what matters most to me: My friends and my job. They are what make me who I am and give me purpose. Some days are long and we work in all kinds of weather. This doesn’t bother me though, because I know that I am helping to make a difference. Without me, Brett would not be able to go out and look at his stock, to check over his land and see all that he has accomplished. We work hard, and in return we get our rewards. For me, it is being respected, and well cared for.

I can still remember the day that Brett got me, five years ago. It was cold, even in Mr. Branson’s tack shop where I sat on my makeshift rack – a sawhorse. Brett walked in, looking for a new saddle. Although he had loved my predecessor, a saddle that had belonged to his father, it had become irreparable and Brett had to face that reality. Brett hung his old saddle on the wall in his tack room and took me home to work with him and Zeus. The heat from the hay and animals in the barn attached to the tack room I now live in keeps me warm, and Brett always wipes me down after a day’s work. I look almost as new as the day Brett laid eyes on me. The best thing about my life is that I’m a part of something. In the tack shop, I was just merchandise, a piece of fine leather for Mr. Branson to make money with. To Brett and Zeus, I’m a partner, helping make their jobs easier and more comfortable. When they chase cattle, Brett rides high in my saddle, his long legs in my stirrups. I keep him safe while he swings his lariat, to catch a cow that needs to go back to the barn for some care. There are many more years in me yet, and I know that when my time comes to retire, I will still be treated with respect as I earn my spot beside Brett’s previous saddle. Well, I’d better go, I hear Brett’s footsteps in the barn, he’s heading this way to come and look after me, before I go to sleep for the night, because morning comes early here at the Triple H Ranch.