A Pony Named Lightning Part One


Several years back, a friend rang to say, “You simply have to look at the pics of this pony advertised for sale!”
I did look and immediately, I felt desperately sorry for this pony. I phoned my friend back to ask why on earth she wasn’t buying him for one of her three girls, all of them extremely competent riders.
“He looks so kind and he’s only two,” I pointed out to my friend. “They’re not asking a lot of money.”
But my friend was adamant that she didn’t want a pony so young and she thought it was way too big anyway to even qualify as a pony. In which case, if he was more than the maximum height allowed of 147cm, he would be difficult to sell on and therefore never worth much. And even if he was a pony now, which admittedly seemed doubtful when comparing his height to that of the man stood alongside him, he was going to grow. My friend said lots of people had seen the advertisement and no one was going to take the chance on this very big ‘pony’ remaining a pony. 
I established that my friend was definitely not interested in buying him. He was living in the depths of Gisborne, miles from anywhere, a true bush pony, a genuine NZ ‘out of Swamp and by Tea Tree', pony. It all was going to be too difficult, she said. 
But I couldn’t get him out of my mind. I knew how incredibly talented these ponies could be. I tried to fight my instincts that continue to get me into so much trouble – I believed I had to save this little pony. And I had no riders. Only one grandson who was three years old. But in my defence, he did show an interest in owning a pony, one day, if he could name it ‘motor bike’ or ‘digger’. Not very promising, I know, but enough for me to pursue this pony. 
I rang the number. 
“I’ve sold him,” the man said. “The people are letting me know when they’re coming down to try him, later tonight.”
“So you haven’t actually sold him? You’ve got people interested?”
“Yes but they’re keen and then someone else has said if these people don’t buy him they’ll come down at the weekend.”
“The pony looks too big to be a pony,” I said.
“That’s because I’m a jockey,” was the reply.
And then I did what I do. I’m way too impulsive. I asked that if I were to deposit the full asking price into this man’s bank account immediately would he accept it as being full and final settlement for purchase of said pony and tell all others he is sold.
“Yes, I would,” he agreed.
I transferred the money. Then I panicked about a vet check. I should have made this a condition. And how would I get this pony transported out of Gisborne, where transporters virtually never go to? 

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