I started volunteering at the local RDA (Riding for Disabled Australia) today and straight away was just clicking with everyone, I had three rides today where I led the horse - I don’t have my blue card so I can’t be the walk-along and support the children or teenagers. I had Ambrose first, a bay quarter horse, who was kinda stubborn but it was just him testing me out and I put him in his place haha. A little Shetland pony called Poppy was next, and his rider was a girl with rather bad cerebral palsy who had three people as her walk-alongs while I led her around. Poppy was such a gentleman, when she was slipping he stopped straight away, which let us all know she was slipping. The last ride I had Repo, who was really stubborn. He had to pee and just refused to move for a minute afterwards and it took another helper to get him moving, and then when we were out in the paddocks he ended up taking the lead and he got all happy, perking his ears up and being all alert, giving little happy snorts. The only hiccup was that he HATED being in the middle of the path and would try and push right up against the side of the track, which I had to watch out for be ause of the rider, so actually made him walk down the set trail haha. Plus he kept kicking my foot accidentally as he walked. Seeing these kids, that have mental and physical illnesses that actually make it hard for them to cope, smiling while they’re on the back of these horses is an amazing site. The girl on Poppy was smiling the whole time, and I couldn’t help but smile back. The first rider I had, a boy with Down Syndrome, was so chatty and he made me laugh and we talked about how much he enjoyed riding the horses and I found out he actually helped shoe a horse once. I learnt so, so much from these kids on my first day, it’s amazing, To think, if I’d succeeded Sunday I never would have had this experience. When I realized that I almost cried. I’ve been so happy today that I skipped down the street afterwards, and I’ve been telling EVERYONE about it and I can’t stop smiling. I get to go again tomorrow! And after school holidays, I’m volunteering every Wednesday and Thursday into the foreseeable future AND I just caught Squeak, she's my favorite mouse who also happens to be a ninja at escaping. This is the third time now but I love her too much to ever give her up. Gunna look into chicken wire around the cage xD or a small fish tank with a detachable lid. She bends the wires on the cage the other two are in, the smart Alec.