Monday, March 23, 2009

How To Frighten A Donkey Nearly To Death

This newest piece of outrage happened to me last week and I only now have the strength to write about it. I'm surprised my hair didn't all turn white over night. She's apologized but I am considering legal action to recover my medical and psychiatric expenses.

One night last week the aqua gods or whoever is responsible for the skies opening, turned all the taps on full blast for an entire day and night. Ark building weather if ever I've seen it. Jack and I stayed in the run-in and watched the horses squelch around the paddock. The woman let us in early and gave us our hot meal with tidbits and good sized piles of hay. We dined and then fell asleep to the sound of rain drumming on the roof. A very nice sound when one is inside rather than out.

At the hour of our late night feed we heard a strange rustling sound emerging out of the dark. It was a sound that required two ears forward but nothing too alarming. Then the light went on. Standing there was a figure clad in a plastic shavings bag, wearing a smaller plastic bag on it's hideous head. It carried half of a cloth sphere, held over it's head on a stick. I let out a mighty trumpet and tried to climb in with Jack. It collapsed the half sphere and made coughing and glubbing noises. "Sheaffer," it said. "it's me!" That confirmed my suspicion that it was an evil spectre come to steal my soul. Rained poured off the plastic garments and it's beady eyes fastened on me. Then it advanced toward me with it's bony claws extended. I tried to crawl under the partition into Jack's stall but onward it came.

It removed the bag from it's head and something about it looked familiar. It was HER of course, as I realized when my heart rate began to climb down from the stratosphere. She had made arm holes and an opening for her head in an evil shavings bag and donned it as a raincoat. Words fail me - I mean, who else would dream up such a demented and hare-brained scheme and not think of the consequences? I don't care if the other three paid not one iota of attention to her garb. She knows my sensibilities are highly tuned. Jack said "Lansakes, boy, ain't ya never seen one a them portable ruffs (he means roofs) they tote around in the rain?" I didn't sleep a wink for the rest of the night and was quite short with her the next day.

The weather has been fine since then, thank goodness, but today it was cold enough for our water trough to have frozen nearly solid over night. While the woman was fiddling with the ice-filled hose, Molly took things into her own hoofs. She broke the ice with a tremendous blow from a front hoof only to pull forth an enormous disc of ice that clung to her pastern like a bracelet. Not one to panic, she stamped her foot in annoyance and finally pulled the thing free with her teeth. The woman sighed and rolled her beady eyes. She left muttering about the sensitivity genes in our barn being unevenly distributed. We have no idea what she was babbling about.


Buddy said...

Hay Sheaffer - that was a very funny story you told about the creature from the blue lagoon - wish you knew how to take pictures!

I sure hope my brave Molly is ok - she didn't hurt that beautiful leg did she?? What a crazy girl she is. Oh - be still my heart!


billie said...

Sheaffer, my gosh - you could sell that to Hollywood and make a fortune!

I'm sorry you were so rudely frightened in the quiet of your evening.

We had a bit of donkeys on high alert here on Saturday, when the neighbors had visitors who came out in their yard and proceeded to throw a softball back and forth. The horses were completely unimpressed, but Rafer Johnson and Redford were quite stunned by the white thing going back and forth, making a smacking sound each time.

Keil Bay went over near the fence line and proceeded to roll, I think to show the donkeys there was really no reason for alarm, but they didn't buy it.

The woman wearing a shavings bag with another bag AND the sphere over her head is just too much. An apparition of doom!

I'm glad Jack was close by to offer some support in the moment.

Nachodonkey said...

I am sorry for your fright Sheaffer. They say a good scare is beneficial to your health but I don't even like movies that have a hint of the macabre. My children - much tougher individuals - have always censored them for me..."you won't like this Mom!"

I have a fair bit of horse equipment that we are not using that I am planning to donate to the Donkey Sanctuary but then I thought that most of us have horsey things that we no longer use and that someone else may want. Do you, in your wisdom, think that a used tack/equipment sale at your birthday with the proceeds going to the Sanctuary would be a good idea? Anything left over could be donated if they found it useful. Your thoughts?

BumbleVee said...

thanks for my laff for the day....I love coming to read your exploits and antics.... ! such a fun blog you make it Sheaffer.... ....

robert5721 said...

I heard someone comment about an agenda that Sheaffer will get no cake on HIS BIRTHDAY???? Just threaten the woman with "Mr Gale has some friends in the RCMP, and WILL take FIRM action if Sheaffer does NOT get HIS CAKE !!!!" That should do it, I WILL get some cake there buddy..and Mr Jack too!!
Just let me know..
Mr Gale

ponymaid said...

Buddy, I assure you Molly's sturdy underpinnings are just fine. In typical Molly fashion, she was merely annoyed by the inconvenience of the whole thing - I would have been in a state of near-hysteria. I don't like water in any form, including ice, which is why I only drink from my small blue bucket.

Billie, it was a most harrowing experience and I appreciate your sympathy. Redford and Rafer were studying the physics and patterns of the ball game at your neighbour's. They are adding to their knowledge base, as all clever donkeys do. Studious lads, those two.

Nachodonkey, if scares are good for one's health, then I am in splendid physical shape, thanks to the woman. I will pass on the tack swap idea to the powers that be but rather think things may be too exciting, what with the party and music and quadrilles etc. I'm sure a bin where persons could put things that the sanctuary donkeys could use would be much appreciated though.

BumbleVee, how nice to hear from you and know you are still checking in! One more witness to the terror and humiliation I must endure. Will you be attending my party? I'll show you my ribs.

Mr.Gale, THIS is why you and Gale must come to my party! I have passed on the threat and she has relented to the tune of one small sliver of cake. Please, please contact your friends in high places and have her put away where she cannot force donkeys into starvation mode.

Uncle Ed said...

Sheaffer, Mr. Completecare is in the middle of putting down a wood floor. I may be able to talk him into converting the said materials into an ark for the next biblical downpour. We may have enough room for Jack and yourself (Donkeys first!) and if we have enough wood maybe even herself. We could sent it down on the high ground so that Jack and yourself could make for a quick entry when the next deluge comes.

Uncle Ed

Ben said...

My heart goes out to you. What form of sheep in wolf's clothing is this. I quiver to think of what horrors await next. I hear that the man has been unwell and therefore unable to protect you. Hopefully he will recover soon. Be brave, stiff upper lip and all. Apparently the others do not see the dangers as clearly as you, much as Churchill in '39. I trust they see the truth before it is too late. We are in a much different situation down here, apparently a casual glance can still reduce a few of the equines to Special Mr. Ed cases. The humans seem to fawn over us endlessly. Sadly they seem to have put up a "Molly Sign" on our stall, which has drastically reduced our treats.
The Emi lady wants to employ us in clicker training. I am honoured to be used as an instructor, although I am unsure as to what a clicker is and why it needs to be trained. I am inclined to assist however as there will apparently be treats in the form of celery. Ultimately she wants to teach us to drive. How splendid! I am seeing a Bentley or perhaps an MG, Jerry wants a Hummer or some such. Perhaps I can come and pick you up for a spin? It will certainly beat walking to the road to get the mail with the barn man. Best Wishes.

Nachodonkey said...

Ben, I had an MGA in my younger years and would love to have you visit if Emi were to buy you one!!It would be wonderful to relive my youth and go for a tour. I am sure you would be "an excellent driver". Sheaffer, you would love the wind in your mane and the sun on your face.

Nacho, the donkey no one could get near in the fall has evolved into a know it all who has to supervise every activity at our house. Mel was trimming Ti's feet on the week end so he volunteered to constantly change Ti's position by pulling on the lead rope or putting his nose between Mel and the hoof to get a closer look. With Nacho's help she got the job done in twice the time!

Last night I tried to longe Bing but I had a donkey standing in the middle with me giving direction on every aspect of horse conditioning.

Please, go back to being the fearful donkey who no one can get near!!!! Life was much simpler.

completecare said...

Hi Sheaffer,

I suggest you take Uncle Ed's offer of letting you and Jack have free passage on the ark. With Uncle Ed building it, rather than Noah, I guarantee there will be a BIG screen TV and a poker table hidden away somewhere. Jack and my mom could settle down for a good natter and we 'younguns' could explore all the ark has to offer.

When the spring rains come to our area my mom and I have to wear water wings just to keep afloat.

If you do have to resort to using the ark I hope you will be back on solid ground before your Garden Party.

Your Fan,


ponymaid said...

Uncle Ed, as always, you know how to prioritize. I am very keen on this ark project but I'm convinced you would have to annihilate an entire old-growth forest to make it large enough for the woman. We'll just let her test her swimming skills when the time comes but we will encourage her from deck-side if we're not too busy.

Ben my boy, this clicker training can be worked to your benefit. Train the human to press the button and they will automatically hand you a treat. Encourage them by putting your head on one side and looking highly intelligent and then just do whatever you had planned to do anyway. This will result in their hand automatically shooting out with a reward, even if it is just celery. The driving business is a cruel hoax. It sounds pleasant enough but in reality you will end up lashed to a cart which contains a human who expects you to tow them around. Pretend you have housemaid's knee or plumber's elbow or tired ears - virtually anything - but don't let them start you on that slippery slope.

Nachodonkey, you are lucky indeed to have such a caring and professorial donkey in your midst. I simply can't imagine how humans manage without our input. I'm highly involved in all everyday activities and Jack is still a keen advisor himself. Just yesterday we carried the empty feedbags outside and set them in the paddock where the breezes could distribute them. Excellent workout for the woman; she was still puffing an hour later after chasing them hither and yon.

Willy, you make this ark project sound more and more inviting. We do not have one of the boxes that displays moving pictures nor a poker table but I am interested in experiencing both as soon as possible. The mud is drying slowly here but not going without a fight and tomorrow is forecast to have rain. An ark on high ground sounds to me like something all donkeys should have by law.