Updated: Oct 18
A couple of months ago I received a message from my friend Hannah Gavagan. I met Hannah in Philadelphia while working as a tour guide in the National Park with 76 Carriage Co. Like so many relationships I made during that time, many endured the test of time, most of the people I grew close too are still some of my best friends. I loved Hannah immediately, everything about her. Hannah was dating another carriage driver friend at the time and they were both in acting school at the Philadelphia University of the Arts School.
Hannah was and still is extremely talented, funny and smart, really smart. I knew Hannah would use her success (something I felt strongly would happen for her) to make a difference in the world, for the better. I didn't foresee her coming to work with us because at the time we met Hannah was terribly allergic to horses!
Nevertheless after more than a decade I received a message from Hannah asking if I would be open to her learning and living on the farm so she could connect to nature and heal that very natural side of herself who was missing nature and the mysterious and powerful effect it can have. Neither of us really grappled just how much we needed each other. I have what Hannah needs with the opportunities she was seeking and Hannah is exactly what I need in order to run this incredibly special farm.
Her arrival only a few days before our first Open House immersed her immediately in what this life really is...a lot of really hard work, physically, emotionally, spiritually. Farming AND being open to the public is hard no matter where you come from or what you have experience with and very few can just jump into it, especially after living in a city, as Hannah has for so long.
But.....Hannah is different, different in the way most extraordinary people are, they don't measure things by what they look like but more what they "feel" like....they measure themselves against what is required to have that life and in that way they jump into it without looking back.
There is where Hannah and I are very very similar and what has drawn us together to begin with. We have spirits that will not settle for things of this world or even promises of the next world, we live according to how something "feels" to us mentally, physically and spiritually. They have to all feel "right" or we won't do it, as much as we want to fit in this way, we can't and maybe that is exactly the way to be in this incredibly complicated time we are in.
I am a firm believer in not believing what a human says but more in what they actually "do". I haven't met very many people willing to do this life as an advocate for working horses, its hard, messy and a lot of the time very very sad. Sad in the way we all know when we witness the ending of something purposeful and "right". Our farming and horse culture in America has suffered a lot of hits with "myth of progress" put upon them in early 1900's. Reclaiming this culture of skills and common sense can seem lost forever if you only scratch the surface, but that is not the whole story and Hannah is a story teller, if she could be described as anything perfectly, that would be it. Hannah wants to tell the story of the working horses in America because they have touched her in the same way they have touched something so deep in so many of us....the horses do know how to unlock our real potential, they are a gift to us that way.
For those that have followed me and this work for years now, you know I am relentless in the face of every kind of obstacle and set back. That is because I know the great power the horses have and they continue to free me from my own tyranny every single day. That is essentially what I have wanted to share but couldn't quite do....until now.
For our supporters I am going to ask you to continue to follow along even though we have reached a new horizon, an intense horizon with countless opportunities for things to go really right or really wrong...socially. Hannah and I are here to say...together...from different generations....that it is our time.... for all the earth keepers and the horses ...who can and will help.
Please do stay tuned and follow Hannah here.. as she builds and creates our social media presence. Very soon we will have Patreon, YouTube, Tik Tok and other platforms and they will all be sharing the very simple message of love and appreciation that we have. It is time we get back to the garden and by that we mean it is time we get back to who we really are as caretakers and we can do it by learning from and thanking those that shared so much with us, especially culturally...the horses and those that live their lives with them.
We have only just begun our journey to real success! Success in being the positive change our communities need with our horses alongside, where they belong.