101. Parades and Horses


Renee had been married for a long, long time. Her favorite part of being married was the weekend, when she was with her two horses. On the weekend, Renee was at the stables from morning until dark. She fed, groomed, and rode her horses. She was an excellent rider. She would ride the horses bareback on Saturday, and then she would saddle them up on Sunday.

Renee loved parades. She used to say, "A parade isn't a parade without a horse." Renee loved parades almost as much as she loved her horses. She belonged to an email list of volunteers for parades. She regularly checked out the state website list of parades to see if there were any new parades that she didn't know about. All the state parades were organized in her computer. In the Parades file, she listed the date, drive time and distance, parade time, contact people, and other details she felt were important.

She knew the parade director of every town within a four-hour drive. She never stayed overnight. She always left the parade in time to get her horses back to the stables before "bedtime." She had to feed them before they turned in. Her horses seemed to like parades, too. They knew a few tricks that always impressed the children.

Renee was very generous with her time and her horses. But owning horses wasn't cheap. You had to rent the stables, and there were always veterinarian and feed bills. Renee knew how to cope with expenses, though. Her vet always gave her a 10-percent discount for paying cash. She always bought the no-name, generic feed for the horses. Her vet had told her it was just as healthful and tasty as the brand name stuff. She always bought economy gasoline. And on parade days, Renee always packed her own lunch and ate with her horses.

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