Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Other "F" Word

The farmer was leaning on the gate this morning chatting with the woman and right out of the blue he casually began to say that soon we will start to get warnings of overnight fffffff, frrrrrrr, frrrrrooooo, I'm sorry, I'm having a bit of trouble continuing.

There. I think I'm more composed now. What he said was that we would begin having FROST overnight. I haven't recovered from the horrors of last winter and the soul-destroying, ear -numbing, grass-killing thing is creeping up on us again. I'm feeling quite anxious - much like the woman when she saw those funnel clouds. Around here the phrase "We're having a bit of weather" is always a bad thing, especially for donkeys.

The woman returned home yesterday with a winter blanket for Jack. It is dark navy blue with burgundy trim and looks like a regimental blazer - highly appropriate for a dignified older gentleman. He will also be getting a raincoat affair for drizzly days, so at least one of us feels more hopeful going into the winter season. I still refuse to wear any clothing whatsoever - I find it restricting and somewhat embarrassing. Jack likes it just fine,and says he's at an age where virtually nothing can embarrass him.

This morning a foot man came and branded Molly's feet. It's a fascinating and smelly spectacle. He heated up a metal device, put iron hoof-shaped semi-circles on it and hammered out footwear for Molly. These hoof shoes are molten hot and he plunged them in a bucket of water, producing much steam and hissing noises. Then, amazingly, he pressed them on the bottom of Molly's feet and she said she didn't feel a thing. A cloud of acrid, pungent smoke filled the air, engulfed the woman, and sent her into a spectacular coughing fit. All this is so Molly will be more comfortable going off on those "girls only" forest rides with the woman. Molly was already quite smug about her special status and this has only made her more unbearable.

I don't care for clothing but I would like a pair of these iron foot covers so I can make metallic clopping sounds as I walk down the aisle of the barn. They emit a pleasant ringing noise and announce the arrival of someone important enought to sport hand-crafted foot wear. I believe it's called making a fashion statement but of course the woman must thwart my every whim, saying I already have cast-iron feet and don't need any embellishments. Pahhh.


OzArab said...

My goodness. Isn't it funny how the weather is so different there to where I am? We actually had a frost the other day and since I was snuggled in my blankets I didn't care. The boss had a few weird words to say about it though. The only bit I heard was "grass not growing" and that scared me a bit!
The weather was so warm today that I have had all my blankets off and have been sunbathing. It has been glorious. Am glad we don't get funny funnel shaped clouds over here in Horsetralia!
Don't be jealous of Molly - I had them funny metal things on my hooves up until last year and they made me hooves hurt. So now I am barefoot and fancy free. (Although I must say it sounded pretty cool going up the road!) ;)

Dougie Donk said...

Sheaffer, please don't yearn after those metal contraptions for your feet. My horse companions get new ones every 6 weeks & it seems to me that they are just an excuse for the woman to take them out of the field & make them work hard. She even makes them jump across large fences!

I like having blankets on for the rain, since horses are too stupid to stay in the shelter & being protected from getting wet allows me to keep on supervising them !

Buddy said...

Hay Dude - I got new shoes yesterday too - the smell isn't very nice thats for shure and the hissing sounds freak me out a little. So Molly and I have new shoes - its almost like we are going steady! I just have them on the front because I have collapsed heels so I have egbar or something shoes. Hoof guy said one more shoeing after this one and I can be barefoot again so I guess the heels are better.

billie said...

Sheaffer, perhaps the woman can find you some little hoof boots and put taps on the bottom so you can make the neat sound. :)

I have been wondering if Rafer Johnson will need (or want) a blanket. I have them for the horses and use them for cold nights and for winter days when we have cold AND rain and they insist on going out.

Frost! We are having a rather mild August here and a couple of nights I've gotten a little chill sitting outside with the horses, but I suspect our first frost is still several months away. Stay warm!

Janet Roper said...

Brrrrr, frost. That reminds me to make sure all snow shovels are handy and in good shape. Thanks for jogging my memory Sheaffer!

ponymaid said...

ozarab - I like the sound of the hoof covers as well. I wonder if I could improvise and use the pull tabs from those tin can things? It's gotten quite cool here today and the funnel clouds are gone - for now.

dougie - if wearing hoof covers means having to jump over things, I may have to rethink this. Jack feels as you do about blankets - maybe one day I'll try one again. Maybe.

buddy, Molly still gets quite silly when she thinks about you - and that is often. Now you have matching footwear...I'm glad to hear your heels are showing more motivation. I won't tell Molly the matching footwear is coming off.

billie, perhaps you should let Rafer choose his own clothing. It never seems to work when someone else choose clothing for the very young. A loud colour featuring illustrations of Super Horse maybe? I like your idea for boots with noisemakers - will explore further.

janet - I shuddered when I read the "S" word - not shovel, the other one. Next thing I know they'll be hauling a tree inside again.

robert5721 said...

I REFUSE to take part in this conversation....I have a set of 000 shoes that you could wear, but I do not think you wish to go that route....Dicey, Liebbie and the whole rest of our crew are "Au Natural"....Dicey didn't even like her spiked ones, and REFUSES to wear them..her very tactile and sensitive donkey hooves are more than a match for ice and are yours I am sure....why guild a lilly??
Re Think the coat idea, they do have advantages there bud....
give Mr Jack a BIG hug from all of us !!
Mr Gale

ponymaid said...

Mr. Gale, I'm quite interested in those micro shoes you mentioned, strictly for the sound effects. I must admit though, the sound of metallic clanging has lost some of it's appeal since the gate incident. They're threatening to put a giant plastic cone around my neck - like the one the dog once had to wear. How humiliating.