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Sunshine and horses

Sunday, December 27th, 2009


YUCAIPA, CA – Here in southern California, we ‘re running out of water, we’re over crowded, and we’re up to our you-know-what in debt. But on a day like today I turned my face to the sun and put all those troubles behind me.

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Riding Miss Daisy

Monday, November 9th, 2009

“Cleo, I want to ride Cleo!”

PERRIS, CA – Twice, I asked politely, but the third time I insisted.

“When can I ride a horse?” I asked firmly of Leigh-Ann Giddings, who runs the Giddings Rescue Horse Ranch in Perris.

Go get Daisy and we’ll saddle her up, Giddings said.

No. Not Daisy, I groaned to myself. Of all the 24 horses on the ranch, “Miss Daisy,” as I’ve come to call her, was the last horse I wanted to ride.

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Blue-eyed beauty, a great find

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

Cleo, a beautiful Paint mare, has gorgeous blue eyes and a tongue that she has a hard time keeping contained inside her mouth.
Photos By BOB OTTO / Freelance Writer & Photographer

PERRIS, CA – We both agreed. What luck. What a find. What a great horse …

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Great day for horses and the countryside

Saturday, October 10th, 2009

Photos By BOB OTTO

PERRIS, CA – Today was perfect. A day filled with sunshine, blue skies, 78 degree weather, and horses. I escaped the hustle and bustle of big city life and drove to the quiet, peaceful Giddings Rescue Horse Ranch located in the secluded countryside south of Perris.

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Giddings to the rescue

Monday, September 21st, 2009

Giddings Horse Rescue Ranch has a variety of beautiful and well trained horses available for adoption.
By BOB OTTO / Writer and Photographer

PERRIS, CA – Leigh-Ann Giddings works 12-hour days, seven days a week. And in the past nine years she’s yet to take a vacation, or even a day off.


“I love horses, I love these animals, and it (hurts) me to see them abused,” Giddings said.

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My galloping fear

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

YUCAIPA, CA – Fear whispered in my ear. “If she gallops, you’re going to fall off.”

For months after I first crawled on top of Mary’s broad, white back, the ground seemed miles away. A long way for a little boy to fall. So whenever Mary grabbed the bridle bit between her clinched jaws and shook her head up and down, telling me, “let’s run,” I pulled back on the reins.

Afraid I would go tumbling off if I let her gallop. Trotting was fine. That I could handle.

I was about nine or 10 at the time, and we lived on the Marshall Ronnigen farm near Zumbrota in the mid 1950s where my dad worked as a hired hand. For me it was if I had floated blissfully into horse heaven.

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