I’ve alluded to this a few times here…and in offline life, I have told more than a couple of stories that included “I thought I was going to be pounded into Painted Pony Paste!” Those stories alway center around time in the pasture with Cookie.
The latest installment in the Painted Pony Paste saga finds us in the pasture, in Feb., just before a new wave of ridiculous cold was coming through. In preparation for the cold, I was attempting to pull up the frozen-to-the-ground straw bales, so I could re-bed the shelter for the horses. Pitch fork and shovel, and finally! Finally, they came loose. Makes horses happy, because oat straw is nummy. Nom, nom, nom, nummy! While Astrid and Ruby argued over who got to eat the chaff that fell out, I took the bales to the shelter, and worked on shredding them. While I shred and fluff, the rule is, no horses in the shelter. There huge, I’m little, in comparison, and I really, really don’t want to die in a 15×15 poop and straw filled shelter.
Normally, I put the wheelbarrow across the entryway, with the bale in it, to block equine entry. That day, however, I just put the bales on the ground. I thought it would be enough to deter nosy horses from bothering me. Oh, how wrong I was!
I had one side covered in fresh bedding, and was working on the next when I saw a large shadow cover the door. Thinking it was Sable-who just wants to be beside people all the time. She’s a total love pony!-I tossed a handful of straw behind me, and kept fluffing. I hear hoof beats behind me, turn around, and see Cookie coming in. Stepping right over the straw bale, and walking in…
Great. I’m about to die…pounded into so much paste, by the prettiest painted pony ever. I’m thinking “Well, at least I will die with the horse I love!”
That’s when she stunned me. Totally and completely.
Understand, that Cookie does not like the shelter. Well, no, that not quite right. She doesn’t like being cornered, or in a situation where she can’t control her path to freedom. She has issues, let me tell you. That’s why hay around the feeder is her bedding:She rarely goes in the shelter, and when she does, she’s last one in, with her head poking out.
So, when she walked into the shelter, I was a fair bit surprised. What she did next, gobsmacked me. She walked over to the side where I had just put down a fluffy layer of straw…and lied down. Yup, lied right down, in the straw, and looked at me like I was interrupting her nap. Well, considering the weather was getting worse by the minute, I had to keep adding the straw. I just talked softly to her the whole time-starting with “who are you, and what have you done with my horse?”-while tossing straw.
All she did was grunt at me, and lay flat out…after a few minutes, the big goober started to snore. Huh. Seems that wasn’t my day to become Painted Pony Paste. Instead, it was a day for my girl to openly show her trust in me. A good day, indeed!