As usual, Doc was very sorry after the fact (undressing Jack) and to make amends, he washed him from head to foot. Jack didn't necessarily want to be washed but he knows Doc well enough to recognize that the offer was meant in good faith, even though it's a bit cold for a full-body bath. He also knows that sometimes a little discomfort is better than a more physical Doc apology . The woman later spent ages brushing Jack to try and flatten the collection of cow licks that occured when his hair dried. She reassured him that he didn't look peculiar with his new disheveled style, but was sporting the very trendy "bed head" look. He appeared dubious.
The next day, when the woman was off visiting Molly, Doc felt compelled to carry all the rubber mats from our run-in to an area at the back of the barn. He piled them in the snow and was viewing his handiwork when she returned. She seemed to understand that it was some sort of sublimation of his desire to undress Jack and she just patted him and said not to worry, spring would be here in six or seven years.
After this week of drama, it seemed a good time to discuss the list of barn rules that I had posted in the barn a couple of years ago. The humans went to an exhibition on Catherine the Great of Russia and came back with her list of rules to be followed by anyone attending her salons. They are so perfectly thought out that I have adopted them as my own. I mean, even such luminaries as Voltaire had to follow them. If he ever comes to visit me, he will already understand the ground rules. They are as follows.
1. All ranks shall be left outside the doors, similarly hats and particularly swords (Doc disputes the sword rule)
2. Orders of precedence and haughtiness, and anything of such like which might result from them, shall be left at the doors. (A touch of donkey aloofness will not be frowned upon, however).
3. Be merry, but neither spoil nor break anything, nor indeed gnaw on anything. (Twigs will be supplied for guests).
4. Be seated, stand or walk as it best pleases you, regardless of others. (Guests may also lie down and roll if they so choose).
5. Speak with moderation and not too loudly, so that others present have not an earache or headache. (Braying is permitted).
6. Argue without anger or passion. (Doc says what's the point,then?).
7. Do not sigh or yawn, neither bore nor fatigue others. (Molly is not allowed to expound on her "great beauty" adinfinitum).
8. Agree to partake of any innocent entertainment suggested by others. (Except Twister - it overstimulates Doc and makes Jack too stiff the next day).
9. Eat well of good things, but drink with moderation so that each should be able always to find his legs on leaving these doors. (Doc disagrees violently with the second part).
10. All disputes must stay behind closed doors; and what goes in one ear should go out the other before departing through the doors. (Although donkeys never, ever forget anything, especially disparaging remarks about their ears).
The punishment for infringing on these rules was to drink a glass of cold water and read a page from the "Telemachida" out loud. I find this puzzling - it sounds like more of a reward to me, but I seem to be alone in this sentiment.