Happy New Year! After a 65 degree day on Friday and rain yesterday, our snow is gone. Today was a fine first Sunday of the new year, 32 degrees and bright sunshine. That is fantastic weather for a horse, as the cool temperatures and warm sunshine were only enhanced by the mud!
That combination of cold, sun and mud made for an active day at the farm—I only horses I saw who weren’t interested in running were Ogygian, Clever and Dan. Those three were more interested in meandering. Oh, and Fortunate Prospect. I walked over intending to take his picture but he was busy napping. He lifted his head up once, when Norty started to canter. It wasn’t interesting enough for him though, because he laid right back down. He only got up when his late morning snack of hay arrived. I never did get a good photo of him.
Swan’s Way has not one, not two, but three spots in his paddock which can only be described as wallows, and he was working on number four this afternoon. He rolled and rolled, probably because the volumes of mud already embedded in his coat was itchy. Then he got up, tossed his head, bucked like a rodeo bronc with all four feet off the ground, and ran down his fence line. The people with me on the tour oohed and aahed, which not surprisingly greatly annoyed Awad. So he ran too, two bay stallions with their tails flagged and their necks arched, snorting and tossing their heads.
Leave Seattle munched carrots during this entire ruckus, and when I turned around to watch the other horses he nipped at me, no doubt because I was momentarily distracted from handing him treats. Pops and Ring watched as well, not as interested in showing off as they were making sure they got their share of the carrots at the earliest opportunity. They managed a couple of head tosses and trotted over to greet us. I think Ring has figured out he expends a lot less energy for more attention when he shows off his tattoo, rather than running around! Both Pops and Ring had hay, mud and sticks stuck in their manes. I don’t know how they managed the sticks, since there are no trees in their paddock. A mystery—do you think they open their gate at night and wander the farm looking for sticks?
I stood and visited with Glitterman this morning, too. If I have a tour with treats, he’s right there waiting. But when I am alone it takes him a little longer. If I just stand still, he’ll wander over and nuzzle me. But he prefers it on his terms, otherwise he isn’t interested. Lean on his fence, nose to nose, quietly chatting, and I get gentle G-man kisses on my cheek. It’s an honor, no doubt.
We had a family with two kids visit today, and the daughter’s name was Marlee. She was pretty excited to meet Marley the dog, and the two of them hit it off. Marlee’s little brother, Ryan, started to giggle the first time he felt Norty’s lips take a carrot. He didn’t stop giggling either, at least until he got cold and tired. But until then his giggle was infectious, and all the horses pricked their ears when they heard it.
Delay of Game, our newest horse, came over for treats twice today. He is a nice horse, dark bay and shaggy in his winter coat. Not a peppermint fan, though. Carrots, yes. But Delay’s loss was Sunshine’s extra treat, so it all worked out.
After a quiet holiday season it was nice to have some visitors today. We are open throughout the year for tours. Give us a call and make your reservation, we are always happy to introduce our horses! We hope to see you soon, but in the meantime thanks for spending this first Sunday of 2011 with Old Friends.