Posted by Ward on July 20, 2005
In Reply to: Happy trails to you posted by Smokey Stover on July 20, 2005
: : : What is the meaning of " rides off into retirement on her new horse " and " Happy trail " in following sentence ?
: : : Before we go, we want to thank Nancy Smart, our editor since the beginning. As Nancy rides off into retirement on her new horse, Taj, we wish her happy trails.
: : I am guessing that the reference is to this song from a U.S. cowboy series:
: : "Happy Trails"
: : by Dale Evans Rogers
: : Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
: : Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
: : Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
: : Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.
: : Happy trails to you, 'till we meet again.
: : (Closing theme to the 1950s television program: The Roy Rogers Show.)
: I have to suppose that Nancy Smart was a horse-lover who got Taj around the time she retired. Since a trail is often where you ride a horse, wishing her happy trails is entirely appropriate.
: "Happy Trails," sung at the end of the Roy Rogers show, was known not only to a huge number of Americans in that era (the 50s and 60s), but also to the huge number of Roy Rogers fans who had followed his career since the 1930s. The cowboy singer and movie hero was an American icon, and "Happy Trails" was a sort of iconic catch-phrase. Read all about him by typing his name into the Search box at the top of the previous page. SS
Happy trails is a particular US and western expression of goodwill to someone departing.
Its a bit like godspeed -- with all the good will implicit in that kind of expression.