This morning I lost Seoul, my 24-yr old Danish Warmblood, to colic. I didn’t start riding until I was 26, but from the moment I swung a leg over a horse it was a passion. So it was a dream come true when I got my first horse, Remy. I love Remy beyond belief, but soon after I got him it became apparent to me that they don’t call ‘em ‘horse traders’ for nothin’. He’s an athletic, sensitive horse with the talent to go all the way. Unfortunately my newbie riding skills were not adequate for a horse of Remy’s type, and that money-hungry "teacher" never should have sold him to me. And so I went searching for a ‘schoolmaster’ to help me learn how to ride and build my confidence, before I got seriously injured or scared into quitting the thing that I loved. Which brings me to Seoul. Seoul was born in Denmark and then taken to England, where he was trained through Grand Prix Dressage and competed through Intermediare II. When I found him he was 17 years old, and his owner was looking for someone who wanted to learn rather than compete him into the ground just to wear a tailcoat and top hat in the show ring. So we were the proverbial match made in heaven – well, except for the part where he bit me twice when I went to England to try him out. But secure in my ability to charm any beastie, I went ahead and bought him and brought him to New Jersey. He taught me well -- not only how to ask for and to ride canter pirouettes, tempi changes, passage and piaffe, but things more subtle and essential. After several years I decided it was time for Seoul to retire -- I just didn’t see any reason to drill into the ground what this wonderful, old horse already knew how to do. And so he became my husband’s trail horse and the horse for children and visitors to hop on if they didn’t know how to ride – and I think it’s hilarious that my Grand Prix horse was the only one safe and calm enough to put non-riders on! Seoul was so calm and steady that when we were home we let him roam the property freely, and as soon as he figured out he got cookies at the back door he started showing up there with much more regularity . . . . Colic took him today, and I’m devastated. But it is with profound thanks for the time he was here that I say goodbye to my Seoulie-Bear, my friend and my teacher.