There's this thing. Actually the technical title of the job is "The Thing." Also, I don't know what else to call it.
The opportunity has been there for a little while. One aspect of the thing is a trip to the United States to pick out some horses for some people Korea which could lead to more trips... not. Of course none of the potential trips stand any chance of happening if I don't do the first thing.
So that's the thing about the thing... it involves a lot of other things (teaching, animals, teaching, farming, teaching, traveling teaching.) and I'm scared because my pay will be contingent on business variables. If things go well with The Thing, I will make a lot more than I am now. But if things don't go well I'll have to go back to what I'm doing now.
When phrased that way it really doesn't sound all that risky. But as I've mentioned before, I'm something of a neurotic worrier. Nevertheless, I'm going to do try The Thing. Now, how to tell my boss???
I am on a new journey with horses 말. In Korean journey is 여행 can mean trip or travel. Sometimes words don't translate well, but I think this one does
. I am traveling this journey with my friend, her son and her parents... Her family. My family.
The idea of sharing (나누는?) one horse with this many people in the United States.... we would buy more horses.
But horses are expensive 비싼 here. Also, I live in Seoul and only have Sundays (일요일) right now to train and ride. Thankfully, his temperament and intelligence makes retraining easy.
그라지오 (Grageo) now Superman's last race was May of 2016. He was sold to a man who brought him to Bonghwa for retraining. The man took him home after one month. Superman got worse and worse and his owner wanted a quieter horse.
So the man traded him in on another horse. Somewhere along the way Superman has had many injuries... both front legs have splints. His hind leg has had a stifle injury. After much debate, my friend and I bought him despite these things. His temperament means my friend, who is not a horse person, can work him herself. Some horses require a trainer to not make any mistakes and the smallest thing can become a big thing. Some horses are very forgiving, but horses as easy as Superman are rare.
Less than a month ago, he was considered a low value horse. Now, everybody thinks he was a steal because he's so good.
I am at my core a horse person. People who aren't horse people might like horses and go for rides on vacations. A horse person though probably could be clinically diagnosed with something. However, psychologists tend to balk at calling something a disorder when millions suffer from it worldwide.
Well, the fact is, if you are a horse person and have a horse, you aren't suffering. You're quite happy. If you're a horseless horse person the daily pain is impossible to explain to those who don't suffer from this affliction.
When I left the United States to work in South Korea, I left my horses behind. I did it because I thought it would lead me back to horses in a better way. It sucks making minimum wage and being simultaneously horse poor. That's because you have the horse but you can't afford the gas to trailer the horse to the trails to go riding. Or if you like showing, you can't afford the entry fees. Whatever you're in horse poor misery which means you give your horse lots of baths and braid his or her tail and make him pretty a lot and generally enjoy your horse time. If you own a horse trailer it's rusty and if you own a truck it's 20 years old. But it's lovely. But much wealthier people are also horse poor. More than half their income goes into trucks and trailers and entry fees and the x number of horses they have, never mind you can only ride one at a time. That means when horse people get together they have a common understanding regardless of socio- economic standing.
Horse people understand what it means to spend all the money you have and don't have on horses and indulge in jokes like "you might be a horse person if you have to remove the hay from your hair before work."
Well, all this is a long way to say I am now the co-owner of a horse. 말 (mal) is horse in Korean. 말 Also means words which can make searching the internet for 말 nearly impossible. Horseback riding is called 승마 (seungma) Riding is about $30.00 for half an hour and varies from the there. I mentioned before that horses in Korea are often skinny.
The stable in Bongwha has horses that aren't skinny. Unfortunately, they kept selling the horses I was riding there and sometimes didn't have a horse for me. Boarding a horse, that is paying for the care and upkeep of horses is called hotel in Korean. Board generally starts at about $1000 a month but varies more often toward the expensive side. One bale of hay in Korea costs about $20.00.
Luckily, I'm paying half of $550, though I could technically swing the full board. My horse's name is Superman. He was named by my friend's son. His registered name, the horse not my friend's son, is 그라지오 (Grageo) which is Italian translated to English translated to Korean. It might mean to pardon/ to reprieve but a lot was probably lost in all those translation. He won about $113,000 during his race Korea.
Mariel R. is an ESL teacher, horse trainer, writer, editor, sporadic blogger, and lover of beer. She lives in South Korea with two cats, three horses, a German Shepherd and 17 chickens.
Bear (Gom in Korean) then (above) now (below)
Geumbi (Goldy in English) R.I.P February, 23, 2018