I think it is safe to say autumn is on its way to central Kentucky. This morning I found myself wishing I had brought a jacket or sweatshirt with me—it was just cool enough to make you wish you had something with long sleeves. The horses love it—Pops, Ring, Awad, and Cherono all danced around. This afternoon, Pops and Ring raced the kids we had on the tour, and even Kiri moved a tad faster than normal on his way to get carrots.
It was a pretty busy day at the farm, since many visitors are in town for the 2010 World Equestrian Games. You hear accents from all over the world, all brought to Kentucky by a shared love of horses. Today our tour mix was about 50-50 between folks in town for the games and our usual visitors—families and racing fans. Fortunate Prospect let everyone pat him, Cherono ran and bucked to show off, and Gulch didn’t miss a tour. Silver Charm came out of his paddock to visit the kids, Ring showed his tattoo, and Pops took a healthy nip at one lady who was apparently not meeting his carrot expectations.
The generally larger tour groups today seemed to fascinate the horses more than usual. I don’t ever want to imply they are blasé about tours, because every horse genuinely enjoys the attention. But the larger groups must have been noteworthy, because the horses somehow seemed friendlier and more in-tune with what was going on. They behaved, for the most part, too. Dan and Flick shared nicely today, and except for Pops’ bad-boy moment, all the usual suspects put their best hoof forward. Tinner was outside in a paddock down by Kiri, and he met us at the gate for tours. Week two of knowing Tinner and my initial opinion hasn’t changed—he is still a manly-man. At least now he has stopped yelling at everything! But you’d be hard-pressed not to see the resemblance between him and his oh-so-famous dad, especially when he looks directly at you. Anyone who remembers Secretariat made the same comment today.
We had some fun kids today, including a three-year-old who had her dad pick her up so she could feed every horse. She was fascinated that the horses like peppermints and she asked me several times why they like it. But her best line was when I commented that she and Silver Charm have hair the same color. She thought about it for a split second and came back with, “No, my hair is a little lighter.” Silly me!
I finished up my day, as I often do, visiting Wallenda and his cohorts at the annex farm. I watched Buzzy and Klassy head outside for the night and I was struck by how comfortable the two old girls are together. They walked out to their paddock, took turns drinking, and waited patiently for their dinners to be delivered. I spent a few minutes pulling burrs out of Benburb’s forelock (should I call him Benburrb?) and scratched Wallenda’s back. You can never underestimate the value of a good backscratching.
You know, I have said this before, but it struck me again today. On our tours today, we saw the sire of a Kentucky Derby winner, in Gulch who sired Thunder Gulch. We also have Polish Navy, who sired Derby winner Sea Hero. We have sons of Derby winners: Williamstown, Leave Seattle, Kiri’s Clown, I’m Charismatic, and Tinner’s Way. We have Breeder’s Cup winners, Eclipse Award winners, and Kentucky Derby runners. And we have Little Silver Charm, who didn’t win the Derby but thinks he would have, if he had only been entered. Ahh, what could have been…
We hope you can visit us soon. Until then, thanks for spending this Sunday with Old Friends.