Horse Riding Lessons #WriteBravely

Horse riding was no cake walk for me.

I feigned ignorance for months about the rule for Princesses to learn to tackle a beast like that. For weeks I would hide somewhere innocently when it was time for the lessons. The experts appointed for this task left their posts within weeks. Hah! I would make each one leave. It’s a war now, between my father - The King and me.

One morning I spotted a rather young man near the stables. The maids were gossiping how handsome he was. Some whispered he was a year or two senior to me. Huh! He must have just graduated then. Father is appointing amateurs now, I see. Had I not been home-schooled, I would have known school life for myself.

I chose the haystacks in the courtyard of the servants’ quarters to hide that day, much pleased with my choice. The sky was beautiful and so were the house-sparrows. Just as I admired my surroundings, a head popped in front of me from nowhere.

“So here you are. You’re late for your classes. Let’s go now,” he pulled me holding my hand.

“How dare you touch me? Do you even know who I am?” I bellowed angrily indignant.

“Yes! You’re my student and a rather difficult one at that,” he said smiling ear to ear, pulling me with a greater force.

The beast was in sight. I visibly shivered. He pushed me to ascend on the saddle which I did in a jiffy, lest the animal turned its head towards me. He climbed up behind me.

The creature started slow and then sprinted across the meadows whose beauty I was too scared to notice. I tightened my grip on the mane as my tutor gave me the ropes, “Hold this!”
I did. I couldn’t relax even when the gallops slowed.

“Back straight!” he shouted. I did like an obedient student.

“You need to dress appropriately next time,” he commented. I nodded.

He alighted as the horse stopped, looked up at me and started laughing. “You are so pale! Where’s the feisty Princess now?” he blurted holding his belly. I reddened with embarrassment. So much for a little ridding lesson! How dare he!

I saw him walking away. Alarm bells went off! “Where are you going? Help me get down!!!” I cried.

“Do it yourself!” he was still laughing. I knew not what to do. Frustrated I kicked my leg and off went the horse. I screamed for my life. I pulled right, left it moved. I kicked again, faster it went. I pulled the ropes up, it stopped. Finally! Phew! I got down without any delay.

“I see you remember your old lessons,” he said calmly smiling as he walked towards me unhurried. I understood what he meant. The very first riding lesson of my life. 15 years ago. And the fear that had gripped me due to that one fall. I was surprised at finding my feet firmly on the ground. How did I…?

I watched him caress the horse, whisper sweet nothings and look him in the eye. He directed me to do the same and I again surprised myself by doing just that. Today I was so short of words.

“His name is Ah Chim Hai meaning Morning Flame,” he said. Such a befitting name for a horse, I thought.  

From then on I waited every morning to get better at riding, to strike a friendship with Chim Hai, and to feel the wind as we galloped through the meadows.


  1. Wow. Such a sweet story with the beauty and the beast. Also you have an amazing narrative skill.

  2. What a sweet story. Loved the characters you created - all three of them.

  3. A story so beautiful and lucid yet comprehensive!

  4. Beautiful fantasy pratikshya.. I love the way u chose the names, settings and words..

  5. Getting over the mental block was the only thing that was stopping the Princess from enjoying horse riding. That was a sweet story!

  6. A lovely story with vivid imagery! Enjoyed reading it!

  7. What imagery! Felt like I was there. Loved the story. Very well written.

  8. I could visualize all the scenes while reading. The narration style and choice of words are very apt . :)

  9. Such a cuute story. I got a the feels. Cheers!

  10. Snigdha PriyadarshiniJuly 17, 2018 at 7:17 PM

    A very nice short story.


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Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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