Sunday, April 20, 2008

Horses on TV

I caught a program on our local PBS station called Arabian Horse: The Ancient Breed last night. For all I know, it may just be a puff-piece created by the Arabian Horse Association, but I do love looking at the animals. Unfortunately, I missed the first 15 minutes and TiVo isn't very communicative about when it might be on again. It's not so good that I'm willing to shell out the money to buy the DVD, but it is interesting enough that I'd like to watch the rest of the show. I particularly liked the segment on the ranch in Nebraska that has a herd of Raffles descendants who are amazing cow horses. The rancher says they outlast quarter horses day in and day out because they have such endurance.

There was also a segment on the Arabian Nights show from Florida and a literacy program built around Farley's Black Stallion books. Confession: I wasn't given the Black Stallion at the right age to read and, sadly, it doesn't read as well to an adult unlike the wonderful King of the Wind. Also, Farley didn't really know anything about horses when he wrote the Black Stallion, which sticks out like a sore thumb if you've studied equines. I think I got as far as the Black taking off in Brooklyn when I said "enough." Nevertheless, I can understand how kids could be absolutely enchanted by the story and anything that gets kids to read is fine by me.

I've also been trying to catch this season's episodes of Equitrekking. I've seen about four of the seven shows, which a different PBS station has been running. Again, it's a little tough to track down the episodes to set the TiVo for when they come on, usually at 2 a.m. One of the episodes took place entirely in Ireland, which made me want to make vacation plans. My niece went to Ireland for vacation a couple of summers ago and stayed at a place where she took riding lessons and could also have taken falconry lessons. I've threatened Len that falconry is the next tbing I'm taking up because it fits right in with archery, horseback riding, and sword fighting. Somebody might conclude I've watched Errol Flynn's The Adventures of Robin Hood too many times, but it would be impossible to watch that wonderful film too many times.


Grey Horse Matters said...

I've missed all these shows, because I didn't even know they were on. I really should take control back of the remote and the TiVo, but I'd have to fight to the death to wrestle it from his hands. I was too old to read those books too,but all the girls read them and liked them. Errol Flynn was quite the swashbuckler wasn't he.
One of my daughters tried falconry and the other tried archery, I say the more things you do the younger and fitter you stay.

M. C. Valada said...

Neither show appears to be in a regular slot, which is why it is so hard to plan for them. If you check the website for your local PBS station, you might be able to run them down. Both seasons of Equitrekking are on DVD.