Ahh, the last day of November and the weather is kind of nasty. It’s cold, gray, and rainy with low clouds. Not good weather for people to be outdoors and the lack of scheduled tours confirmed that. But the horses think this weather is just grand. I got out of my car this morning up by the big barn and could hear the thunder of hooves from the back of the farm. Two or three seconds later, the entire herd of geldings flew up to the fence. Let me tell you, four geldings in one field, along with Affirmed Success and Futural can make a whole lotta noise! It was pretty neat. That of course got everyone else going; Pops and Ring, Williamstown, Swannie and our two new horses all started running.
Yep, we have a couple of new residents. The stallion Stage Colony arrived this past week. He is a big, handsome bay horse, a son of Pleasant Colony out of a Stage Door Johnny mare (hence his name). He is settling into the paddock between Wiliamstown and Ogygian. (Monday had previously been residing in that paddock but she has healed enough to head back to work.) Today, Stage Colony was busy working the fence line showing off for the geldings in the field behind him. I imagine he was also trying to impress Willy and Ogie, but frankly they couldn’t have cared less. Willy is mourning the loss of his gal Monday, and Ogie is just too darn cool to get worked up over some other horse’s antics. By the way, as you know Silver Charm was Monday’s other admirer. He seems to be handling her loss somewhat better. He had a nice pile of hay in front of him today and he seemed rather blasé about the whole thing. Easy come, easy go, eh Charmie?
Our other new horse is the gelding Siphonizer. He is a pretty dark brown horse who was recently claimed for us by Maggi Moss and trainer Steve Asmussen. Siphonizer is pretty young; in fact he is a member of the Class of 2001, the same year that gave us Smarty Jones. For the fans out there of Meadow Stud, Secretariat, and Penny Chenery, Siphonizer is a great-grandson of Derby and Preakness winner Riva Ridge, on his dam’s side. He is hanging out in the paddock across from Swannie and I think he needs some time to figure us out. I spent a little time with him on Friday and again today. Both times he tried to be friendly, but then he decided well, maybe not and backed off. No worries though, Swannie will show him the ropes!
I also have an update on horse Professors Easy Ellis and Danthebluegrassman. Their “try-outs” at Chris McCarron’s jockey school did not go well and so both horses are back at Old Friends. I think Dan got into the work environment and realized perhaps he was better suited to eating treats and greeting people. (Or, as I told Michael: he doesn’t want to work, he prefers to volunteer!) I don’t want to imply that Dan was faking that sore leg; let’s just say as soon as he got off the trailer back at Old Friends, the limp magically disappeared! And Easy, according to Michael, got off the trailer practically at a run, and didn’t stop till he was back with his buddies. We may not be able to catch him for six months!!! The horses sure have a way of telling us what they want, you know? In a way it’s too bad, because both horses would have been great teachers. But selfishly, I’m pretty happy to have them back.
That’s about all the news at the farm. The holiday season is in full swing and the tour season is definitely slowing down. But we remain open for visitors all winter long, so if you have some time on a nice day, come visit us. In the meantime, thanks for spending another Sunday with Old Friends. -Val