Monday, October 6, 2008

Mission Accomplished!

I'm still recovering from my grand day out but every minute was worth it. We were gone for six hours, three of those spent in my metal box crawling through something called a traffic jam. I'm not familiar with those but can safely say I don't like them - there is absolutely no jam involved.

We arrived at the church with not a minute to spare and I was thrust into hat and tie. Everything in the city seems to be covered in a hard black surface so it was a relief to cross the street and enter the church paddock, or front lawn as they call it - it even had an apple tree so I knew I had come to a donkey-friendly locale. There were 81 other animal participants, including a rabbit and a blue bird called Bubbles in his cage. I've never seen so many dogs in my life but I behaved perfectly and didn't try to murder any of them. I was intrigued by the very busy road in front of the church - the traffic went in both directions at all times. I suggested we explore but the woman wouldn't let me off the lawn.

I could hear someone who turned out to be the Rev. Kevin talking in the background, saying nice things about the importance of animals in the world, when all of a sudden a huge din broke out and everyone was singing about "All Things Bright and Beautiful". The woman kept glancing at me to see if I would make a sudden exit because of all the noise and activity but I simply stood still and studied the new and fascinating things around me. I was patted on the forehead by so many people that I think my hair has gone a bit thin. They all said complimentary things and asked many questions about donkeys.

We animal guests each received our own personal blessing and the Rev. Kevin thanked me for coming and told everyone how I was a great gift to my family and he wished me a long and happy life. Then he told everyone how donkeys have a cross on their back because it is a special gift that is mentioned in the bible and there was much amazement when they saw mine is so clearly visible. The woman gave him a stack of papers that tell all about the PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary and they were snapped up in no time by the crowd. Our goal was to raise awareness of the sad plight of many donkeys and I think we were quite successful in our mission. The ceremony finished with a portrait of self taken with the three clergy in attendance, including an important person called the Regional Dean, who very rarely visits. I was not able to give my sermon this time but am quite sure I will be invited back to do so in the near future. I wouldn't want to waste all that latin.

Back I went into the trailer, not to go home but to the home of friends who live near the church. I've never seen anything like it. No paddocks, but lots of greenery and more of those lawn things everywhere. These humans have an acre in the city which is considered a lot of land - I was a bit concerned about the small size of their farm but then they took me into an area behind the house called the backyard. Pure magic. It was full of amazing things. The most amazing thing is a huge blue body of water they swim in - of their own choice! I stared in disbelief - the only way you'd get me in that much water is - well, you couldn't get me in there and that's that. It has a board on springs that they use to catapult themselves in there - insanity! There is a perfect little house next to the pool that a donkey could live in very comfortably and lots of tropical plants all over the place. I peered through the windows longingly but the woman wouldn't open the door and let me in.

I was received so graciously by my humans' friends that even though the environs were strange, I felt quite relaxed and comfortable. Then the most wonderful human from across the street came over to meet me. His name is Ed and he was a jockey long ago for someone called E.P. Taylor, both here and in Europe. We bonded immediately and he and his other half, Brunhilde, catered to my every whim while my humans went in the house. It was getting darkish and we had to head home, but I balked and didn't want to get in the metal box. I wanted to stay for awhile and visit some more with Ed while I took in more of the wonders of city life.

Jack's minder did an excellent job and except for some initial braying, he wasn't very upset at all. He was overjoyed to see me, though, and tried to pry the gate open with his nose before the woman could get the latch undone. When I got in the paddock, he jammed his nose up against me and didn't stop till we went in our stalls. I was just as glad to see him. The woman says I was overstimulated because I could hardly eat my dinner and couldn't relax for the longest time. I spent the night telling Jack everything I had seen and done. I didn't even stop when he lay down and started snoring.

I know I am cut out for the missionary life and now I have the travel "bug" I plan to journey as far afield as the metal box will go. If I just keep moving I can probably avoid winter for the rest of my life.

8 comments:

Dougie Donk said...

How absolutely superb your outing sounds! I am particularly impressed by the fact that you had THREE clergymen to personally bless you, although it is no more than an honourable donkey personage deserves.

Congratulations on spreading our message to such a wide group & also on behaving so impeccably in the face of many strange human, animal, avian and vehicular stressors.

I am very sorry that you did not get to share your sermon with the audience - perhaps you could treat us to a preview?

Finally, I think that congratulations are also due to Jack for having coped so well in your absence. Hopefully, this means that he is beginning to recall that humans can be trusted.

robert5721 said...

Sheaffer,
what a wonderful tale of adventure and discovery! Bet you were glad to be rid of the hat....hard for all of those fans and admirers to pat you with that on, although it did look good!! Your impeccable behavior speaks well for ALL Donkeys, and as you will be president of the Donkey Party here in the United States, we are all in awe of your achievements!!
I bet you and Mr Jack will be swapping stories for quite a while, so please share some of them with us!
Mr Gale

billie said...

Sheaffer! You're such an inspiration and practically a world traveler now. What handsome photographs of you, too.

I am most impressed that you were brave enough to walk so close to the edge of the Pacific.

A wonderful journey for you, and you are the perfect ambassador for donkeys everywhere with your charm and distinguished manner.

Rafer Johnson has the vet here on Thursday for a leg check. Everyone keep your hooves crossed. :)

ponymaid said...

dougie - thank you so much. I'm surprised to find out that I quite like being a public figure. I'm shocked at the public's sheer ignorance on all things donkey and have made it my mission to enlighten them. By the way, Ed the jockey is from your part of the world and told me about races he rode in "over there" where he and the horse jumped over large obstacles while running very fast. Most amazing man. Oh, and I passed your congratulations on to a very pleased Jack.

Mr. Gale - if Sunday is what being an ambassador entails, then I'm all for it. I simply don't understand why the Donkey Party in your great country doesn't feature actual donkeys. They have a lot of gall using our image so freely without any recognition. Could you speak to them about it?

billie, thank you! I'm blushing under all my facial hair. I'm still mulling over all the things I saw and heard but I truly did enjoy my day. To mix a metaphor, Rafer's leg has been on my mind and we will all be glad to hear the news on Thursday. I'm quite sure he is such a robust young man that he has grown an even stronger leg.

robert5721 said...

Sheaffer,
What you speak of is the dernicrats, you and your party ARE NOT affiliated in ANY way with them! You are the ONLY candidate for the DONKEY party (different than a dernicrat) After you get the cheif cheese seat after the election, we can SUE them Dernicrats (A FAVORITE tactic that THEY use often!) to have them STOP denigrating DONKEYS of the world by association with THEM..hehehe... I personally think that they should use a SKUNK as their mascot....FAR more fitting for them.
Mr Gale

CindyLouWho said...

Sheaffer,

What wonderful pictures of your victorious appearance at the Blessing of the Animals!! I am so proud to be one of your *fans*! Of course, my ungrateful woman has been away all week with The Pony, so I had to wait until now to send my accolades.

When you do get to deliver your sermon, I fervently hope your woman is wise enough to have someone video it. Then you can sell it on your website for more help for the Rescue.
Being a public figure is a wonderful thing... everywhere you go, the people amass to ooh and ahh over you. I love getting off the WhoBus and seeing how many people are gathered just to see me! As they were for you!

You don't want to get too close to that *traffic* thing... those vehicles are not very equine-friendly. Stay a good distance away; they're very unpredictable.

I'm also relieved to hear that Jack survived his time without you. I can say from experience that is reeeaallly difficult when your stable mate goes on an excursion... you never know when or even if they are coming back. It can be very nerve racking. At least your woman got Jack a companion for the day. Mine just leaves me home alone to fend for myself in the measly 7 acre pasture. But, then again, there are many days when I am the one going on an adventure and HE is left home alone. My woman says it all equals out...

Your Friend,
CindyLouWho

ponymaid said...

Mr. Gale - these Dernicrats seem to lean toward the weasel family. I am still furious at their ursurption of the donkey name. We should get together with the elephants and litigate until both phony parties are obliterated.

Cindylou - you have your own bus?! How wonderful! I very much covet that bus and would like one of my own. If I am to become a public figure, I need suitable transportation. Speaking from the platform at the back of a train also appeals to me. Do they still have those? By the way, tell your woman seven acres is not enough grazing to keep body and soul together. You must be fading away.

robert5721 said...

Sheaffer,
Mr Rambonie man and we are going to a religious meeting celebrating the fall season here in Virginia, and I have told him all about your adventures up there....he seems very interested in your sermon and all it entails.... please send it to him by telepathy (I am SURE that you can do that) so that he can deliver it by proxy for you....he will give you FULL credit for it I am sure....
Mr Gale