All the rent horses were perfect to me, but Bumpy was just a little more perfect. Up for anything, Bumpy was like that friend who always seems to have a blast wherever they go. He was a fuzzy bay whose mane and tail would get bleached so light by the sun that he looked like he’d gotten a bad highlight job at the hair salon. It was all a part of his charm, along with his large round star in the middle of his forehead and his afro of a forelock. Poor fella really could’ve used some anti-frizz treatments.
Bumpy wasn’t for beginners simply because of his propensity to run, and if given the opportunity to do so, he would take it whether his rider hung on or not! I fell in love with Bumpy for many reasons, but one of the most endearing things about him was his enthusiasm. You couldn’t help but smile when you were around him because he just seemed to love whatever he was doing at the time so much that it was contagious.
One summer I got up the nerve to ask the owner of the rental stables if I could lease Bumpy for a month. I wanted him all to myself, to pretend I had a horse of my own for a little while. I remember being terrified to ask, but my will was stronger than my fear, so finally I did it. He said yes. I was overjoyed, and that month Bumpy and I spent nearly every day gallivanting through the mountains of Griffith Park.
Several people fell in love with Bumpy the way I did, and he proceeded to be owned by a few different people after being a rent horse. He ended up with the same wonderful lady who greeted me at the Bar S office that one day so long ago, and I can’t think of a better owner for him. Bumpy was given a beautiful retirement, where I know he played with the same joyful go-get-‘em spirit he always had.
Bumpy left us not too long ago, and many tears were shed in his honor, from people in California to me in Texas and I’m sure to others elsewhere. This wonderful horse worked his way into the hearts of so many. To draw a quote from his latest owner, “It’s amazing how many lives have been touched by horses.”
Bumpy taught me to have fun, to live life to the fullest, and to not be afraid to go after what you want. I sometimes forget Bumpy’s lessons, but anytime I think of him I’m inspired to live carefree the way he did.