Sunday May 22, 2011

Last week?  Cold rain.  This week?  Spring has apparently given way to summer, as it was mid to upper 80s this weekend, and rather humid. There’s no point in complaining about any weather in Kentucky, because it sure will change on a dime.

Today was the kind of day I really enjoy at Old Friends—full to bursting with tours, lots of terrific people from all over, and topped off with a troop of Girl Scouts and their families.  I think the horses love these days for exactly the same reasons.  Well that, and lots of people translate to lots of carrots!

As our morning tour was visiting Kiri and Awad, we saw a large horse trailer pull into the drive. Our newest resident, Afternoon Deelites, was on board and letting us know he was in the house.   We hurried up to the big barn in time to see him stride off the trailer like he owned the place.  Afternoon Deelites is the sire of our Popcorn Deelites, and the two horses really look nothing alike.  AD is a big, muscular, dark bay horse with a classically gorgeous head.  Pops is lighter, both in physique and color, and he has that distinctive and unique face that looks nothing like dad’s.  AD and Pops are our second father-son duo, along with Gulch and Wallenda. (Note:  Tim Ford reminded me on Tuesday that Tinners Way and Riva Way are also father and son!  So, we have three duos!) I took every tour into the big barn to see AD today, but he was far more interested in watching every other horse he could see from his stall window. He wasn’t ready for carrots just yet. Check out Afternoon Deelites’ pedigree here.  By the way, Afternoon Deelites finished 8th in the 1995 Kentucky Derby, under Kent Desormeaux.  That year, the Derby was won by Thunder Gulch—a son of our Gulch. 

Anytime a new horse arrives, especially a stallion, it is a bit of a routine-buster for the other horses. Today, between AD’s arrival and Ball Four’s turnout in a paddock along the pond, you’d think the other horses would be wound up.  But they weren’t really too bad.  Marquetry ran some when the trailer arrived, but he’s a show off anyway.  The only horse who seemed worked up was Falcon Scott. He huffed and puffed and paced on and off all afternoon.  Don’t know if it was Afternoon Deelites’ arrival or that he could see Ball Four across the way.  Probably it was a little of both. 

And then there was Gramps—nothing is going to change his routine, by golly.  Certainly not the arrival of some young whippersnapper!  And Gulch pretty much could have cared less too.  But then, Gulch is He-Man.  He believes he is the top dog, and while any number of the stallions would beg to differ, you’ll never convince him otherwise.

You know, they say there is a person for every horse.  Our own Leave Seattle has plenty of friends, but he is not known for his willingness to stand and be fussed over.  This afternoon, one of our visitors really took to Leave, and he took to her.  She stood and stroked his face the whole time we were visiting Awad and Swannie.  The two of them just hit it off and he was as content with her company as I have ever seen him.  I think he would have followed her home if he could have.  I’ve never really seen him act like a puppy dog before, but he sure did today.

Even without the Girl Scouts, we had plenty of kids visit today.  Ranging in age from maybe 4 to high school, every single one of them was fun to have on a tour.  There were plenty of first-ever horse kisses (Marq and Free Spirit’s Joy do especially well with that) and lots of horse slobber.  I had fun teasing a couple 14 year olds who “eeuwed” every time they encountered slobber. But they get a big pass—one of the girls donated the proceeds from her Kentucky Derby party sno-cone sales.  So as far as I am concerned, she can get as grossed out by horse slobber as she wants!

I had a couple of inquiries into how Stormy Passage is doing, and I can say he is doing great.  He is still on stall rest with no visitors in order to keep him from bouncing around on that bowed tendon, but he is getting better and will continue to improve.  Someone also asked about Bluesthestandard, who has been barn-bound with his own tendon issues.  Blue was outside for a while today in Charmie’s paddock.  He is doing much better as well. 

We are open for tours every day, at 10 am, 1 and 3 pm. In addition, on weekends we offer an additional, evening tour.  For more information or to make a reservation, call the office at 502-863-1775.  Thanks to all the fun folks who visited today. We hope you can visit us soon.  In the meantime, thanks for spending this Sunday with Old Friends!     




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13 responses to “Sunday May 22, 2011

  1. Anne

    Once again, Val, your thought filled post was such a joy to read. I was looking up AD’s pedigree and I never realized he had such a royal one. Secretariat, the great Ruffian, Private Account, it goes on and on… his little dad who I am proud to have a halter of… Just amazing. I think Burt Bacharach (sp) owned him. Pretty boy then and he seems to be now as well.
    It must be pretty interesting with new stallions arriving. I agree some people are like the dog whisperer, they can charm a snake as well. Great story.
    Thanks again for the Sunday Special. I always look forward to them. Have a great week! Hugs and kisses for them all.

  2. Val
    Always look forward to reading your blogs. We were there last month to visit. How is Clever A. doing?

  3. My husband and I visited you on Saturday and had a wonderful time. We spent the most time giving carrots and scratches to Shadow Caster – our adopted OTTB’s sire: .

    LBR doesn’t look much like his stocky sire except for his color. He did inherit a very nice tempermant from him too though.

    Thank you for taking such good care of all the retirees!

  4. Oh my! Now we have two Deelites . It would be fun if Breyer made Christmas ornaments of the residents, they started with the Triple Crown Winners but did not do them all, they now do breeds ornaments. I love Old Friends, the enthusiasm, your blog, Michael B. and just everything about you all. Kisses to Pops…

  5. Kathryn

    O,` I am so hoping Leave Seattle & his Lady Visitor renew their acquaintance frequently. That snippet of a story made my day . .. thank you, Val.

  6. Tim

    We also have Tinner’s Way and Riva Way on the father/son duo….

  7. MRO

    Breyer Christmas ornaments of all of the residents would be amazing. My tree would be full of horses!

  8. Hello:
    Just got an newsletter email and noticed Easy Ellis passed away. What happened? Very sorry to hear about it.

    • oldfriendsblog

      Hi Mike.

      They found Easy in his paddock in the morning. Not sure of the cause. He sure enjoyed life and he died with his buddies in the green grass of spring. Can’t ask for much more than that I suppose. -Val

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