Fuzzy Boomerang

Last night I got the call.

Once again, my bad boy horse has outworn his welcome. This is the fourth time, I’ve sent him to a new home, with great hopes that this would be the one, but like a furry boomerang he is coming back. Only this time, I don’t have a pasture to put him in.

For those who don’t know about this horse of mine, True is a beautiful, slightly-feral, unrideable, but completely loveable 1200 pound pet. Eleven years ago, I wrote a book about him (but never published it). The first chapter is hidden on my website.

I love this horse, but he has embodied every disappointed dream I’ve ever harbored.

And now, it seems, he’ll be moving to Virginia.

On Friday, Nick and I will go check out his potential new digs—a pasture about three miles away on the other side of Route 81, where he’ll have a field and a run-in shed and all the grass and hay he can eat, plus a view of the mountains (if the name of the place—Mountain View Farm—is to be believed).

When we sold our farm in Pennsylvania and moved to Virginia, so many people said, “I can’t imagine you without horses in your life.”

Now, we don’t have to.

As frustrated as I am with this horse who just can’t seem to settle anywhere but in my life, I’m also a little bit happy. This might sound weird to anyone who doesn’t love horses, but I miss the smell of horses. I miss the rich aroma of leather and the sharp, musty smell of hay, even the tangy scent of fresh manure. And more than the smell, I miss the feel— the soft, velvety spot on the side of a muzzle, the solidness of a cannon bone, and the warm, smooth expanse of a flank.

True is a beautiful animal—that’s why everyone falls for him despite his naughty nature. He’s got a big personality that is playful with just a hint of danger. He’s curious and intelligent and he mostly wants to be good—he’s just got deep-seated trust issues (don’t we all?).

I learned a lot from him back when he arrived an unschooled, barely-handled three-year-old. I thought I was the one who would teach him—and I did finally ride him (with the help of my cowboy friend), but in the end, I learned a lot about expectations, flexibility, and respecting the individual, whether they are two-legged or four.

So, I guess his story with me isn’t finished. Apparently, there are more chapters left to write.

And that’s how life works, isn’t it? The only story you can write is the one you are given.

Hope you’re writing a good one — or at least learning from the ones you’re reading!

Hey, thanks for reading. I know you’ve got lots of options, so thanks for sharing a few of your minutes with me.



My latest novel, Blind Turn is a mother-daughter story of forgiveness in the aftermath of a fatal texting and driving accident. Learn more about it and find out how to get your copy here.

If you’re curious about what else I’m up to, check out my website, CaraWrites.com.

If you’d like to subscribe to my (sometimes) monthly e-newsletter, click here.

And If you’re a dog lover, check out my other blog, Another Good Dog. And if you want to know what is really happening in the animal shelters in this country, visit, Who Will Let the Dogs Out.

I’d love to connect with you on Facebook, twitter, or Instagram, and I’m thrilled to get email from readers (and writers), you can reach me at carasueachterberg@gmail.com.

My book, 100 Dogs & Counting: One Woman, Ten Thousand Miles, and a Journey Into the Heart of Shelters and Rescues was released July 2020 from Pegasus books and is available anywhere books are sold, but if you’d like some help finding it (or want to read some lovely reviews), click here.

Author: Cara Sue Achterberg

I am a writer, blogger, and dog rescuer. I live in the darling town of Woodstock, Virginia in the Shenandoah Valley with my husband and three rescue dogs (who rescue me on a daily basis). Find more information about my books, my dogs, and all my writing adventures at CaraWrites.com.

One thought on “Fuzzy Boomerang”

  1. THAT is the perfect horse for me. I don’t want to ride one. I just want to hang out with one, take care of it and enjoy its horse nature. BUT I’m living on 1/3 of a lot, so… I’ve known ONE horse well (and many others casually and without comprehension) THAT was one of the three most significant relationships in my life.

    You’re right. You learn about who they are if you let them tell you, and how are you going ignore the power of 1000+ pounds of muscle, intelligence, yearning for belonging, and will? Since “the one” my life with horses is completely different from what it was. I listen to them and damn if they don’t tell me openly what needs to happen, what they’re doing, and what’s going on. Their sense of humor and awareness of what’s going on is amazing. I love them absolutely totally love them. “My” horse made me a better dog owner and better human. I hope this works out well for both of you.


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