Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Winter is on its way

Rolex in the snow flurries

We awoke to a dark, dark morning. The horizon didn't even begin to lighten until nearly 7 a.m. due to the heavy cloud cover. I've spent the last few days battling a bad head and chest cold--the thought of trudging out to the barn in the early chill didn't sound enticing, but the horses needed looking after.

John and I arrived at the barn, hot coffee in hands, and welcomed by nickering horses. Ruffy tosses her head when she's hungry and Harley makes his "giraffe face"--opening his mouth and twisting his head sideways. Rolex relentlessly paws the floor. Since they all eat better outside, we walked them down the hill then delivered feed, hay, and water via the truck. The loggers were already hard at it, their saws whining and trucks rumbling in the forest. One log truck was nearly loaded and ready to pull out by 7:15 a.m. They begin work in the dark, working by headlights, and finish in the dark as well, headlights bobbing through the woods and over the pasture as they shut the gate at the end of each day. The horses don't seem to mind the constant traffic of log and chip tractor trailers passing by them all day long. Chalk it up to life at the track--trailers, tractors, airplanes--they've seen it all before.

I was beat by the time we got back to the house. Time for little breakfast and then a nap. My stuffy head and chest made me feel woozy and exhausted after mucking stalls and the multiple trips up and down the hill. The weather station predicted snow in the afternoon, and sure enough, it began to snow around 1:30 just as I awoke from my nap. As the snow flurries intensified, I decided to go out and get the two old guys, Gator and Vance, in out of the wet. They are both recovering from bad bouts of rain rot and needed to stay dry. Of course, once I brought those two in, everyone figured it must be time for dinner. They stood at the bottom of the hill, looking up at me with ears perked, as if to say, "What about us?"

Harley in the flurries
By the time I had their stalls ready--fresh shavings, water, and hay--the flurries had diminished. I took Harley up, then went back for the girls. Rolex wanted to go next, but Ruffy didn't want to be left all alone and began running the fence line. So I tried taking both together. Rolex, not to be passed by Ruffy, made snake faces at her, leaving me stretched between the two. But Ruffy wouldn't follow Rolex through the top gate, so I had to loop her rope around the fence and tell her to be a good girl--I'd be right back once I got little miss redhead in first. Ruffy stood good as gold, hind foot cocked, relaxed, but happy to come in with her stable mates. I lit the lanterns, checked everyone over and picked feet, then grained them all, and tucked 'em in for the night. I needed to get home and warm up after getting damp and chilled--just what I needed on top of my cold!

So here I sit, snug by the wood stove, tapping on the computer, knowing our gang are toasty warm in their stalls for the night.


  1. So sorry to hear about your cold - that is awful in wet, chilly weather. I hope you are feeling better now! Keep warm and healthy!

    Love to hear about Harley's giraffe face.

    1. I'd love to know what a behaviorist would say about it too! I'm not sure if it's a "begging" thing or what. Someday I'll capture it in a photo and post it.

  2. Such a good feeling to be plopped next to the popping fire, knowing that everything is just as it should be out in the barn. Reeeeeelief! Everyone happy and healthy. That's as sweet as it gets. I take this over anything else any day. (Even if my hands and toes are frozen as popsicles!)


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