My ‘Man From Snowy River’ duster holds so many memories. First, standing in the western store in Sydney, Australia and trying on all the ‘Man From Snowy River’ hats! It smelled so good in there, all leather and oilskin.
My duster holds the personality of so many horses. It was rolled up and tied behind: Roany, Smokey, Indian, and so many horses. It saw me through bunches of mountain rain storms with my hat dripping rivulets, sheltering my horse and me from the cold wind.
In its pockets were twizzlers and cinnamon candy for the trail. It doubled as a pillow at night in my tent. That duster could tell stories of long beautiful days on mountain trails, of cold so harsh it was difficult to stop the trembling muscles, of deep conversations with wranglers and campers, of long walks with injured horses , of countless bales of hay hauled out to feed and wheelbarrows filled and emptied, of early mornings and starlit nights and campfires with singing and guitar and s’mores.
It could talk about hanging on the back of the door in the tack room under the picture of Harrison Ford on the horse shoe rack, or being tossed in the back of the 4-runner on the way up to Boutwell. It holds stores of coming into the cabin dripping cold mountain rain on the floor while hot coffee brewed or hot cocoa was mixed or of hanging on a Ponderosa Pine branch to dry out with various flannel shirts and hoodies. It was a good duster.