Monday, April 28, 2008

Mira will turn 34 on Friday, May 2nd.


International Half Arabian Association
Registration Number 1A 134448
Foaled May 2, 1974
Sire: Radamar
Dam: Shalimar
Breeder: Tony Seger
Owner: Donna Smith

When Bob Weston, equine director at MCC, told me to ride Mira that morning in 1984 I got a big lump of fear in my throat. Mira was a lively, cantankerous 10-year-old back then.

But, after one ride I knew she was a good horse, and better yet, a good teacher. I learned to jump on Mira. Okay, so I closed my eyes at every “take-off.” But, the important thing was that we always landed safely on the other side, and soon I didn’t want to jump with any other horse but Mira.

Mira was a beautiful mare, very correctly built. One of our grandest moments was the time she won a halter class at an open show, beating a well-known quarter horse stallion owned by Preston Nixon. We were in quarter horse country, so that was a big deal to us. He was a good sport about it, and congratulated us on our lovely mare. She captivated many judges with her conformation and beauty when she was young.

Bred in Indiana, Mira already had an impressive show record long before she came to Williamston to teach college students. She was winning halter classes from the time she was a weanling in 1974. Mira was Indiana State Reserve Champion in halter as a yearling. There were 20 horses in her class. She was Indiana State Champion Mare as a two-year-old and Reserve Champion as a three year old. When she was four years old, she was named Indiana Half Arabian Mare High Point Champion earning points in halter, driving, English pleasure and western pleasure. She placed Top Five at the Indiana Region 13 Championships in halter, and she also placed Top Ten that year at the Ohio Buckeye Arabian Show, which is considered the pre-world championship show. Mira’s picture appeared in Arabian World Magazine. She won countless ribbon in performance classes: western, English and driving, before I met her in 1984. Mira’s grandsire, Muzamar was a national champion park and halter horse, and her great-grandsire, *Muzulmanin, imported from Poland, was also a National Champion stallion.

Mira produced two beautiful foals while she was teaching at Martin Community College. When I bought her it was because I wanted a nice broodmare and show horse.

Mira was an excellent broodmare. She taught my young, impatient stallion what to do. He fell off a couple of times, until he learned to balance on his two hind legs. She never kicked or laughed at him. Well, maybe she snickered just a little.

She was the best mama in the world. She took good care of her babies, but still let us come in to admire and love on them - Magic Mira and Gemini.

But as a show horse she was a challenge. She didn’t haul well in a normal trailer, so I bought a big stock trailer for her. She did very well at shows in outdoor rings, but did not like indoor arenas. She ran away with her riders a few times, would toss her head and protest the whole idea. One time she ran out of her stall while we were putting on her bridle. She didn’t stop running until she got to the end-gate of the main arena. Talk about humiliated! There I was trudging along with empty halter in hand, with Mira wild eyed from her adventure, and a gaggle of terrified 4-Hers sitting on their horses waiting to be attacked by the crazy Arabian.

Mira, in spite of those antics, was a premier lesson horse. She has tolerated dozens, maybe a hundred or more, adults and kids yanking on the reins, bouncing on her back, and kicking her in the sides over the past 20 years. She rewards them when they get it right by responding instantly. She can make the most in-experienced riders look smart. She can still unceremoniously dump the ones who refuse her the respect she deserves.

And now she is 34 years old. She still is patiently teaching. She’s a little gimpy some days, she’s gotten a little low in the back, and she’s a bit thinner. But, the beauty is still there in her talking eyes, and in her spirit. She is the queen of the barn, and we are mere plebeians, created to be at her service.

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