Home > Trip > Dispatches > Daily Dispatches 2013 > Daily Dispatch #4

January 4, 2012

I don’t need another horse
I don’t need another horse
I don’t need another horse

This morning I was out before the sun was up. No mean feat, because the sun isn’t up around here until 9:30 a.m. We see it in all its glory, rising over the Chugach Range, around 10:30 a.m. It appears from under a low cloud cover, rises above it, and disappears again.

Anyhow, I began walking away after tending to the horses and then turned around. What was before me was a small herd. All five were eating from various hay piles, every so often one or another would walk over to another pile, in hopes of finding something better than what they were eating. Never mind these critters are eating $13.00 square bale hay

–it’s just not good enough if your neighbor is also eating it.

Up until now, the horses had been kept separate, creating the illusion of their being fewer in number than they actually are. We have three enclosures – we’d been keeping Hrimmi and Signy apart, by stabling Siggi and Hrimmi, and keeping Tinni and Siggi apart, by stabling Tinni by himself. It’s definitely been a game of musical ponies these past few months. It sort of reminded me of the Graduate Record Exam questions – If you have corn, kale, spinach and squash, but squash and corn are incompatible, etc.

But unlike vegetables, the horses adapted to being shifted around. I could, finally go up to a horse, point to where I wanted him or her to go, and he or she would comply.

Anyhow, yesterday we put Hrimmi in with all the horses including her dam Signy. Signy let Hrimmi know that she was no longer the dairy queen, by walking away from her last born. Signy was very polite about this. Hrimmi maybe spent all of five minutes attempting to nurse, then went back to eating her share of the very expensive hay. So, yes, she’s now officially weaned. So this means that Hrimmi, Signy, Raudi, and Tinni; or, Hrimmi, Signy, Raudi, and Siggi can all be out in the large enclosure together.

And this morning I put out extra hay, so that Tinni could spend some time with his herd mates. He and Siggi don’t spar when they’re eating. So, what I saw when I turned around was five horses all together. I was pretty much blown away by the sight – it is indeed a small herd. No, it’s not just a small herd, it’s my small herd. I’m responsible for all phases of training and care. All total, this now takes me about five hours a day. In order to get the work done, I have to be organized and focused. So far, so good. And, being all things to all these animals has its better moments. Some better moments happen in the pen and some better moments happen on the road.

Today, for example, I again rode Signy and ponied Raudi. I don’t even have words to describe how wonderful this was. Signy moved along at a fast, but easily controllable clip. And Raudi, who has been trotting sporadically, also moved along nicely. Most importantly, we three mares really enjoyed ourselves. I also rode Tinni, who is again tolting nicely. And I walked Siggi and Hrimmi, who were also glad to be out and about.

I don’t need another horse. I have a tee-shirt with this statement on it – it’s repeated three times. And outlines of five horses are beneath it. The first four are black, and the fifth one is white. It represents Hrimmi. The statement is supposed to be a mantra. Of course, it’s not working. An image of Solfari keeps coming to mind. Maybe my mantra should be – more land, more money, more horses. Just kidding, Pete. But wouldn’t this look nice on a tee shirt with say, six horses?

Next: 5. 1/5/12: Moving Forward, Incrementally