Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Every once in a while, the stars align just right to cause an adventure to happen. I'm not talking about the fun ones where you get to see new sights, experience new thrills, and generally have a fun, happy time. These kind of adventures are the ones you are glad ended just fine, but hope not to repeat again too soon. Of course, this adventure involved horses.

I was sitting inside just finishing my lunch and a bit of reading. I am accustomed to the noises outside, but always notice when there is a new or odd noise. I can't tell you, now, what that noise was, but it arrested my attention immediately. Then I heard the unmistakable sound of a stallion excited! As I know our *Beau's voice well, I knew it was him (*Leo does not have a mature voice yet for all he thinks he does). I jumped up from my seat and looked out the windows.

There were *Beau and *Red, heads hanging out of their fence, snuffling noses with THREE RED HORSES THAT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN THERE! I popped my head out of the door and said, "*Walker girl, what are you doing out? And how did you get out?"

I ran down the stairs, threw off my slippers, crammed my feet into my boots, whipped my coat around me, stuffed treats into my pockets and slapped my hat on my head. Out the door I ran and the fun was ON!!

Before I even approached the horses, I went to check the gate to their paddock expecting some damage. There was none. It was simply unclasped. Great, I have a mouthy, smart horse that can undo gates. I'm betting on *Leo.

Although all three know me well, and love their treats, they were FREEEEEEEEEE, free as the wind, free as the snowflakes flying through the breeze, free as....well you get the picture. And so, they were having little to do with me. Each time I got close they veered off into another direction. Finally after a bit, *Jack noticed that I had treats in my hand. He decided that treats were far more interesting than running around in deep snow following some mare that likes to kick his butt whenever she gets the chance. *Jack followed me all the way into the paddock and I shut him in.

One down; two to go.

This time I knew I had to have a halter. You see, when you are dealing with more than two horses, it is best to divide and conquer. I knew I could get *Jack with treats. *Walker is a bit harder; being older and more experienced at evasion.

I approached with the halter in one hand and treats in the other. She politely took the treats and let me slip the halter on, even though it isn't her color (what red horse would wear hot pink, really??). Off we went to the paddock, *Leo following like a good little foal. In *Walker went, but alas, *Leo refused to follow.

Adventure time for *Leo!! Off he went. He's starting to become more brave, and wants to venture forth without mom. Afterall, he is a big colt now of 8 months old! *Leo explored and I followed. Finally, after about 5 minutes of exploration he ended up back at the paddock gate. I grabbed the halter from *Walker and slipped it on *Leo.

With foals, aw heck, with horses...well you know the old can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. When a horse decides they will not do something, there is no making him. The key to a good relationship with a horse is to have them always want to please you. The problem with foals is that they haven't figured that out yet because of their lack of experience.

So here we stood, a hot pink halter on a gold champagne 8 month old, paddock gate open. Halter in my left hand, a too-big halter I might add, which allowed *Leo to snake his teeth around and graze on my knuckles from time to time, and treats in my right hand. All the while I am having to convince both *Walker and *Jack that they don't want to come back out of the paddock. Finally, about 20 minutes later, *Leo decided he wanted to do what I wanted and came in.

Like I said, some adventures you don't necessarily wish to repeat too soon.

The gate now has a second clasp on it.

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