Gerard Schmid has always loved horse riding as a way to stay active, spend time with his daughters and go places that few people ever discover, so it’s no surprise that globetrotting is right up his alley! Not one to do things by halves, for his first ever horse riding holiday, Gerard signed up for the full-throttle adventure that is The Scottish Borders Ride along with his daughter Theresa. To quote from his testimonial, ‘it was a one of a kind experience that we will always treasure. We both shed a happy tear on our last day of riding. We did not want it to end!’
Read on to hear more from Gerard and find out where he’s off to next.
What is your day job?
I retired at 61. I am now 66 years old and do home projects and maintenance. Our five dogs and four horses on nine acres of land keeps me busy.
How have horses influenced or changed your life?
Having horses gave me an interest outside of work and an opportunity to be with my two daughters, since they ride.
What is your earliest memory of horses?
My earliest memories of horses is driving my younger sister Mary to horse shows with her pony MarGay, and later her Thoroughbred Chivas.
What was your childhood pony called?
Since I started riding at 28, there was no childhood pony. My first horse was my twin sister’s Thoroughbred, Tia.
What does riding or being with horses mean to you?
Riding horses keeps me active and fit. There is nothing better than being outside trail riding.
What have horses taught you the most?
Horses have taught me that they see the world differently than I do. It is my job to understand how they see the world from a flight or fight perspective.
What was your first Globetrotting ride?
My first Globetrotting ride was the July 11-16, 2019 Scottish Borders Ride. The Common Rides were from the towns of Kelso and Jedborough. It was extra special to ride with my daughter Theresa.
What made you take the plunge and sign up for a Globetrotting holiday?
When I was working, I really did not have the time to ride. I was busy helping my daughters Theresa and Mary Grace ride for 4-H and their high school equestrian team. When I retired, I wanted to get back into horses and wanted the challenge of an advanced ride like The Scottish Borders Ride.
Was your Globetrotting ride celebrating or marking a significant moment/milestone/achievement in your life? And if so, would you mind sharing?
My achievement was getting back into riding shape after retiring.
What Globetrotting rides have you since completed/planned/dreamed about?
I am signed up for the Glenorchy Back Country Ride from January 20-24, 2020.
Why choose this type of travel? As in exploring a new country from the back of a horse?
l do not like laying around on a beach. I want to be active, so horseback riding and hiking fills the ticket. Horseback riding takes me places that most people don’t get to experience.
What is your most memorable Globetrotting moment?
The most memorable Globetrotting moment had to be the first Common Ride when I hand galloped the first stretch of ground after the host town parade. There were 160 horses and riders and I was flying! Whew!
Who is your favourite trail horse of all time and why?
My favourite trail horse was Indi, an Anglo Arab that I had for 10 years. She and I did the Michigan Shore to Shore trail ride four times. It is a 220-mile ride from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron in the lower peninsula of Michigan. She had great heart and showed me how generous and trusting a horse could be.
A tip that every globetrotter should know before going on a ride…
A tip for every rider would be to be in tip-top riding condition, be ready to meet your new horse friend and keep your heels down.
Finish this sentence: Don’t leave home without… A good rain jacket, helmet and your sense of adventure.
Keen to follow in Gerard’s footsteps (or should that be hoofprints)? Get all the details on The Scottish Borders Ride here!