The yellow sign said Yard Sale, so I stopped to look around. I saw the saddle in the dirt. Could not believe what I had found.
The leather on the horn was gone. The seat all caked in dust. The conchos and the buckles were seized up from years of rust.
The leather straps were torn away. Both cinches looked well used. That saddle needed someone’s help. For sure it’d been abused.
The old man took a look at me and got up from his chair. He said, “That saddle’s been around. It shows a little wear.”
I asked the old man what he’d take. He stretched and scratched his head. “I’ll take a dollar for it, son.” That’s what the old man said.
It seemed his eyes looked through me. Said, “That saddle’s meant for you. I hope you’ll fix it up one day and show me when you’re through.”
I handed him the dollar; threw the saddle in the truck. Most yard sales are a waste of time. That day I had some luck.
So I wrapped the horn in leather, and I glued it down in place. I cut new leather straps, and tied the conchos down with lace.
I tied a brand new latigo and buckled on the cinch. Then I oiled up the saddle, and I didn’t miss an inch.
The old man’s worn out saddle was now good enough to ride. I couldn’t wait to show him, and I felt a certain pride.
I drove out to the old man’s home. He met me at the truck. I showed him my old saddle. Said, “I’ll sell it for a buck.”
The old man kinda chuckled; then he handed me a One. A handshake sealed the deal. I felt a good deed had been done.
The old man said, “I’ll keep this saddle for a day or two. It brings back good old memories, but it’s really meant for you.”
I told him that I’d buy it back in just a week or so. He smiled. “I’ll take a dollar. That’s the going price, you know.”
Well I never made it back again. I’d heard the old man died. But that worn-out dollar saddle helped me find my kinder side.