Life is never dull in the country, no matter what you have heard!!
Laid back, perhaps, but NEVER dull!
We have managed to get thru’ the Blizzard of 2010 relatively unscathed. It came and went, came and went, leaving way more snow then Virginia is used to. Powers outages, collapsing roofs, artic temps, are just a few of the side effects of this snowpocalypse/snowmageddon/snOMG/snowmore!!!!
Glancing out my window the other afternoon, in the midst of this 3 foot snow vista, I saw something that caused me to do a double take! Under the cedar tree, where I toss the cracked corn for the deer, was a large gray, unfamiliar, yet, very familiar form!
The huge, gray, Percheron mare from across the river, had escaped her fencing and her massive nose led her right to the deer feed!
I yelled up to Mr. Green Jeans, as I was throwing on my boots and coat, to call the neighbor – her horse had gotten out!
I ran out the door, grabbing a bucket of feed, and a dog leash(!) as I went! The horse tack was in the barn, and I didn’t want the horse taking off before I could get her!
As I approached, I guess she thought she was in trouble, and she started to circle the tree. But I continued to speak softly, and shake the feed bucket. Food won out, and the mare approached.
I’ve met her before, on walks across the river. She lives in a huge field, with cattle, and now 2 other horse buddies. She is very sweet, but HUGE, with dinner plate sized feet, standing 17.5- 18 hands.
She was large enough to know that I was no match for her. So, food was the link to getting her to follow me. With the dog leash dangling from her halter, she followed me, and the food, to my barn. When we came thru the trees, she caught sight of my horses, and they saw her! She took off for the barn, thru the almost 3 foot snow, to visit some new friends!!
The “old man”, ever alert, saw this huge grey “thing” charging across the field – and just knew, it could not possibly be a horse!! Discretion being the better part of valor, he turned tail and ran to the far end of the paddock! The “big guy”, leader of the pack, now considerably dwarfed, and realizing he was no longer the BIG guy, was cowed for the first time in his life!!
With this mutant horse charging across the snow, the “big guy” decided the “old man” had the right idea, and followed him!!!
Little Miss Lilly, all 30 inches of her, ran thru snow up to her neck, leaping like a rabbit, passing the other two, in her effort to escape!!
Breeze, on the other hand, saw nothing to fear! He perked up his ears, flicked his tail in a flirty manner , and pranced in his best style thru the deep snow, to the fence, to greet this beautiful female intruder!!! She did look alot like a mare he used to live with, but on a much larger scale!!!
I was a bit worried for my fence!! With her height, and the added packed snow, my fence only came up to her chest- and the electricity was not on!!
Mr. Green Jeans came out, with a proper lead- the neighbor was on the way. He was not going to let me try to lead this mammoth out- I might get hurt.
Since the snow kind of impeded my mobility, I let him take over!!!
It took a bit to catch her – she was very interested in Breeze. Eventually, food caught Breeze’s interest (it was near dinner time, after all!), which in turn, again, caught her interest, allowing Mr. GJ to catch her!
The neighbor and her dog came running over – difficult to do in the deep snow. We suggested she ride the mare back – but that wasn’t an option. My daughter wasn’t home – she would have jumped right on!!!
So, Mr. Green Jeans said he would lead her back home, over the river. It took a bit, to get the Percheron with the program, finally she settled down and began the walk home. It wasn’t an easy walk, with the hard, deep snow, and those big hooves so close to his feet! The neighbor and I followed behind – struggling thru the snow, and trying to walk in their footprints!
(If you go to this previous post , third pic down, you can see how much the water has receded, after the rains, photo was taken at the spot Mr. GJ is crossing the water)
Mr. GJ and I trudged back thru our tracks, at a much slower pace!!!
I went back to the barn to finish the nighttime routine and feeding. The “big guy” was snorting and anxious – not wanting to go into his stall to eat!! He kept glancing thru the stall out the open barn door, sure that mutant horse was still out there somewhere! My ‘big guy” had lost his bravado!!!
So, I closed the barn door, coaxed him in for dinner, and eventually, he calmed down and began to eat.
When Breeze came a little too close, all of a sudden, the “big guy” remembered WHO he was, pinned his ears and rushed Breeze- as if to say – I AM the boss within these walls – and don’t you forget it!!! The “big Guy” was back!!!!
Life is happy, and never dull, at Mountain Meadows this morning………..