Saturday, November 17, 2012

Barn Inmates

It's that time of year again. You know: wind, sideways rain, maybe some hail and a dash of snow if it gets really wild. We are actually only about 8 miles below the snow line, but it's enough and we rarely get a bit of it, let alone anything that sticks--for which I am *very* grateful! When I lived in the wintry wilds of Maine I was very young and just in riding lessons so managing horses in the snow wasn't an issue and there certainly isn't snow falling 12 miles from the Mendocino Coast where I grew up.  I must say I am quite content to continue my ignorance of horse keeping realities in the snow! 

Still, it rained about 2" overnight and despite snug blankets there were some soggy steeds out in the fields this morning. By noon today, all 6 stalls were full. I took pity on Desire first, since she has a virtually nonexistent winter coat and gets cold even in a midweight waterproof sometimes.

Inmate #1, 16 yr old GE Blazunhaat Desire
If she went in the barn that meant that Sheza and Napoleon-mini, her neighbors, had to go in as well. It was raining HARD at this point, I mean streaming down my face hard and it was a minor miracle that mini Napoleon, instead of skipping the barn and making his usual dash for freedom out into the yard, trotted his smart little self right out of the pasture, down into the barn, and into a stall. Since the last storm when I groomed and trimmed his feet and had a sort of bonding session he has been letting me scratch on him out in pasture for the first times ever, and seems to be getting generally less wild and rebellious, though still has that Mighty Mini attitude of course. 

Inmate #2, 6ish yr old Mini Horse Napoleon/Bandito
As usual in stormy weather Sheza tried to evade capture the first time, pulling away from the halter all wild-eyed and spooky, but this time when she saw mom get haltered she promptly rushed up next to me and let me halter her without further issue. She spooked about on the lead line like a spazz going down into the barn and lasered in on the first open door, putting herself into the far stall while Bandito put himself next to Desire where Sheza usually goes. All I saw was bodies safely in stalls so I promptly called it all good and shut the silly things in their respective boxes to sort themselves out ,with lots of hay and water. Despite rain gear and muck boots, a full wardrobe change was necessary after that a.m. adventure!

 Inmate #3 19 mo old Sheza Blazunhaat Xpres
 Around noon my husband, who sometimes pretend to be gruff about the horses and their spoiled treatment, casually but obviously entreated me to put Joey into a stall, too. We can see his pasture with the goats easily from the living room window and Joey's violin playing was loud and clear as he stood at the gate in his blanket with his head down. I immediately got sucked in and went out to "Rescue" him, in the process discovering that it had rained SO hard his hand-me-down but just re-waterproofed blanket was soaked all the way through! No wonder he looked miserable, he was all wet under the blanket and cold in the gusty winds. Sticking with his usual tendency of behaving perfectly when it's really necessary, Joey was a total gentleman for me to stop and collect Blaze on our way to the barn and everyone greeted each other wildly when we arrived and zoomed around their stalls for a few minutes until the excitement wore off. Desire was dry and warm in her midweight blanket already so I snagged her polar fleece cooler and put it on poor wet Joey.

Inmate #4, 16ish yr old Arab cross Blaze, imperturbable as usual 
 Inmate#5 7 yr old DF Touch of Mojo, a little bedraggled but looks sharp in blue I think!
 Inmate #6 Lex, adolescent Red Bourbon SuperTurkey, not to be left out in the rain!
Oh, and I skipped a post so here is a few shots of Joey boy out on the trail the other day. We only went about 5 miles but climbed a couple steep short hills in there and he was much slower and nearer the end of the lead line by the time we strolled in the driveway!  I put my weight in his stirrup from Blaze's back out on the trail after a few miles and he couldn't be bothered to look up from grazing. He is just a different and happy horse out there.
Happy out investigating and grazing
Quiet after the ride..
Just checked out the window...yep, still dark and windy and pouring--so it's off to my arm chair with a book, some cocoa, and a dog or two for my lap!


  1. I hope you aren't eating that turkey for Thanksgiving...please say it isn't so!

    Lie to me if you have to! " )

    1. Haha! No, he isn't getting eaten for Thanksgiving. Originally there 2, a pet for us and Lex, and he WAS supposed to go back and be eaten--but we decided to keep him coz he's like our 5th dog now, haha