Tuesday, January 19, 2010

it was like spring here today

No jacket this morning when I went out to feed breakfast, no fire in the woodstove, and the pile of gloves lying near the back door offered a distant memory of the bitter cold from two weeks ago.

At the barn I discovered a cycling mare who spent half her day chasing (and sometimes at a trot) the big red QH, fly predators on my composting manure piles, and later in the day, tiger-striped mosquitoes on the Big Bay's face.

Keil and I had a lovely late in the day ride. He met me at the gate and I got most of the dried mud off him before tacking up. My daughter was already riding her pony, and we crossed paths many times before the sun started to set.

Cody got ridden too, which made me happy. I was in the arena two days ago and not only were the donkeys shoving at the gate to get in, but Cody too. The day before that the pony had nearly knocked the gate down, wanting to get in where I was riding. I love it that the arena is such a popular place!

After the ride, I untacked Keil Bay in the barn aisle and gave him a snack. About 2/3 through it he heard something and strode purposefully to the barn doors and looked out. It was moments before sunset, and he had done that magical trick horses do where they seem to gain several hands. With his head held high and his entire body on alert, he was 18 hands and counting, highlighted by the last few rays of sunlight.

We ended up by the round bale, with me putting his oil of oregano onto frogs. I happened to look up and the sky had suddenly gone pink and purple, in long layers of alternating color. Only a few minutes later, the pink had gone to white and the purple to a deep indigo blue, in the same layered pattern.

There's not much more one can hope for in a day: perfect weather; a handsome, happy horse; and a gorgeous sunset.


Grey Horse Matters said...

Sounds like a wonderful day all around. Wish our weather was as lovely. I would have loved to see a picture of Keil Bay looking out into the sunset and growing even more handsome. Hope your days this week include more like this one.

ponymaid said...

Billie, I can only imagine what that sort of weather feels like. Do you think spring is now at your place to stay or will you have some more token winter? Anyone shedding just yet? Not the donkeys, I know, as we hang onto our winter woolies till the bitter end.

billie said...

Arlene, it was lovely, if still a bit mushy! Thankfully the arena drains well so there is rarely an issue with riding after rain.

billie said...

Sheaffer, it appears that we will have two more days of warm, but tomorrow's warm will be with RAIN again, and then we will cool down to 40s for a day before going back up to 50s. There are rain clouds on several days in the forecast and I am not happy about that.

I seriously doubt we are done with cold weather. The hallmark of our area is the wildly fluctuating temperatures that seem to come and go with no rhyme or reason. It can be maddening, and it's why we often have horse blankets and fly masks hanging side by side in the barn.

No shedding yet - usually the horses know when it's really time - I think I've read that their shedding is triggered by the lengthening days versus the temperature - which prevents them from being fooled by the erratic weather we have!

I've about decided I'd rather have the cold than all this rain.