At Old Friends, after a rather emotional week it was nice to have a nice, peaceful Sunday. We barely got past the memorial for Black Tie Affair last Saturday when we lost Bonnie on Thursday. By the time today rolled around, a quiet weekend was greatly appreciated!
As far as tours went, it was a fairly typical day. We began the morning with visitors from Germany. They weren’t horse people, just a family visiting the United States with a horse-crazy daughter. Someone told them the visit Old Friends, so they came. We had fun—carrots, mints, kisses, slobber, the whole deal! Academy Award, Marquetry and The Wicked North make a great combo to introduce people to Old Friends, since they are all so friendly. Actually, I suspect the three of them stand in the barn, their stalls side by side, and talk amongst themselves. Norty definitely has told the other two which of my pockets holds the mints—each of them tried to wiggle their big nose into my mint pocket today.
This morning might be the first time I have seen Falcon stand quietly, with all four feet on the ground. Being just off the racetrack, he is a bit wound up still. I wouldn’t go so far as to call him calm, but standing quietly is nonetheless an accomplishment. He is going outside for the entire night now and his stillness is definitely a result of being tired! He is a handsome horse; as he puts on some retirement weight and fills out, he is going to be a real looker.
Ogygian must have been hungry this morning, as he came over to see the kids at a canter. (Usually he is more of a meanderer!) Then again, I’ve thought for a while that Ogie secretly likes little girls. He totally ignored the rest of us—parents, brothers, and tour guide—in order to focus on his new friend. Fickle horses! You know, you can bring them carrots each week, say nice things about them, rub their faces, and chase flies. None of it matters. They will leave you in a flash for the 12 year old girl who speaks softly and carries a big carrot!
This afternoon we had a group of people from Michigan, Illinois, and right here in Lexington. We walked down to see Pops and Ring, who is still working the crowd with his lip trick. I swear Pops was rolling his eyes at him! Awad looked kind of drowsy today. He wandered over but seemed more laid back than usual. Awad doesn’t like the heat, and while today was a bit less steamy than it’s been, I think the cumulative effect of the hot summer has been a little hard on him. He is definitely a cooler weather horse. But then, I think the summer heat has been wearing on most all of the horses. Even Bull, the king of treat hounds, didn’t bother to come over for treats this morning. Too far to walk, I guess.
After the tours today, I wandered over to the annex farm to see some of the boys I don’t spend much time with. Early Pioneer is looking really good, after a bout with some foot problems last winter. Sgt. Bert was dozing in the sun, his bottom lip drooping a good two or three inches below his mouth. There is a lot of sun bleaching happening, in fact I had to think twice about who is who among the bay horses. For example, normally Luke is nearly black. But at this point in the summer he is a nice, dusty bay color. In fact, the only black horse who is still black is Smokey Stover. He goes outside at night—no sun! Even some of the chestnut horses, like Hussonfirst and Thornfield are showing signs of sun. Formerly glossy red coats are more of a burnt orange. The only red horse who still looks red to me, not surprisingly, is Creator. And that’s just because he is too vain to ever allow his coat to be sun bleached!
As you can see, it was an uneventful day at the farm, which is probably just the way it should be. We had some fun visitors and some sleepy horses—kind of typical for August, I suppose. We continue to offer four tours a day for the summer. We hope you can visit us soon, but in the meantime thanks for spending this Sunday with Old Friends.