Monday, March 9, 2009

Tales From The Bog

We are enmeshed in the process called "spring thaw", which sounds quite nice until you actually try to set hoof outside. As far as the eye can see, a glutinous layer of deep mud covers a shrinking layer of ice. Donkey hoofs are not designed for these sorts of barbaric conditions. Jack and I venture forth and are immediately sucked down to knee-level by unseen forces. We flail around and make our way back to the run-in, legs covered with black goop .

The horses don't care one iota about the mud and gallop around like idiots, covering themselves and us with the stinking mire. Jack says he's heard of donkeys being sucked right down to the centre of the earth, their bones only coming to the surface as the gloop dries. He is sometimes prone to exaggeration but I think he's quite accurate in this case.

As if this mud scenario isn't enough to give a donkey sleepless nights, Sally has developed a tremendous case of spring fever and plays in her gym all night long. She bats the mouse in the spinner up to particle acceleration speeds and the thing makes an incessant "zzzziiiiizzzz, zzzziiizzz noise. When she is satisfied with that element, she begins whacking something called a cat tree, which features spheres filled with ball bearing-like objects. Then she gets out the mouse with the squeaker and roughs him up. Finally, she begins a one-cat field hockey game with the collection of hard plastic balls that are filled with bells. The cacophany is deafening.

Jack is rather deaf and sleeps through it all and Molly is so intent on her beauty sleep that she simply tunes it out. Doc and I have developed carry-on luggage bags under our eyes and spend the day in a state of fog. We love Sally dearly and don't begrudge her her delayed kittenhood but I will certainly welcome the warmer weather.

I am busy planning my party and keep the woman hopping with suggestions and "must haves". One of the latter was that Sheila from the PrimRose Sanctuary has to attend and she promises she will be there, with several donkeys in tow, including the venerable PrimRose who started the whole sanctuary years ago. And now, back to my stall to work on the master plan not, as herself says, "continue the devious plotting."


billie said...

Jack sounds like he has some Edgar Allan Poe in him!

I hope your bog dries out soon. Ours has, although it appears more rain is on the way. We are like a see-saw down here, with weather going up and down and all of us trying to stay either warm or cool or wet (like Keil Bay taking hoof splash baths out of the water troughs today) or dry.

You will be very proud to know that young Rafer Johnson and Redford absolutely REFUSED to be weight taped today, which I think is probably some sort of donkey standard handed down from the ancients.

Knowledge is power, and they seem to think that my having actual girth measurements is truly not a good idea.

I let them smell the weight tape, and they took a quick whiff and backed away. :)

robert5721 said...

I AGREE with Rafer and Redford, as those weight tape things normally coincide with a reduction in foodstuffs received....they are VERY SMART DONKEYS!! What does your woman use for this endeavor?
Mr Gale

Nachodonkey said...

I really like the idea of the Summer Sox. I will definitely order a pair or two. It will be great to keep flies off the legs for foot trimming. I might get a pair to keep the flies off my legs too!! You could perhaps put a notice on the board at Mel's barn? The girls and I are going to do a major purge of horse items we have stacked in the basement that we will never use again, at least not six of everything. Would the lady at Primrose need bandages, halters etc? It would be nice to see these things used by someone who needs them.

I am very happy to see the mud. The last couple of weeks have been terrible with the ice. The poor critters have had a small patch of frozen dirt on the south facing hill next door to stand on 24/7. They ventured up the hill on the north side of the valley the other night and then wouldn't come down on the ice. I spread the last of my shavings about 100' in a narrow path up the hill and spent an hour trying to convince them to walk down to the food and water. My lovely Artex (who does not trust me on her back) followed me without hesitation just with me holding a lock of her mane. The rest of them took their sweet time and followed. Pitch black, ice and rain. Not fun at all!!

Sheaffer and Jack sound like much more refined gentlemen than Nacho and take a greater pride in their appearance...or perhaps they are just more mature and have lost the joy of playing in mud puddles.

rangus said...

Hello Scheaffer
The ripples continue! Emi, who owns the barn that Molly went to, has agreed to take in 2 Primrose donkeys. Ben and Jerry will be arriving on Friday morning and we can hardly wait! They are only 6yrs old, so they will likely require the benefit of your wisdom and experience. As well we humble humans will, no doubt, require guidance so that we may properly attend these fine Gentledonkeys. Hopefully we may impose upon you for assistance from time to time.

billie said...

The weight tape thing I have is a measuring tape on the opposite side... so I have tried to let the hint drop around the barn that sometimes women who love donkeys measure them for other reasons than, ahem, diets! :)

Although I admit, I was trying to get a girth measurement as well, but more for my record-keeping endeavors than anything else.

ponymaid said...

Oh Billie, Jack is full to the brim with E.A. Poe. We are still bog-bound and Jack is probably going to start quoting the Raven anytime now. We donkeys HATE those measuring tape things - I am proud to say my girth has never been calculated using this method. She has tried but I have managed to foil her so far. Donkey weight is highly personal information and we refuse to share it - and yes, that is programmed into our DNA. The woman threatened me with bathroom scales but then decided the spring would come undone.

Mr. Gale, as usual you understand. Those hateful tapes equal a reduction in foodstuffs. We can't have that; I'm on the verge of emaciation as it is.

Nacho, Sheila st Primrose is very grateful for all donations - the donkeys go through many supplies in their rehab. And yes, ice is one of the most dangerous and despicable substances on earth. I can see no use for it at all and yet someone keeps making it appear. Probably the woman. Nacho is suffering from an intense case of being very young - he will soon outgrow this youthful desire to coat himself in filth. The woman says I myself was known to do some restrained puddle splashing in my formative years. Hmmm...

rangus, this is extraordinarily exciting! I am sending the woman with her photographic apparatus to capture the arrival of young Ben and Jerry. I will be pleased to serve in a mentoring role as their grey-haired uncle. In fact, maybe I shoud move in with them? I like the sound of that huge indoor area where a donkey can roam without getting wet feet.

Billie, that is the sort of diabolical tape the woman has and I won't let her measure me in any direction. All this measuring smacks of Phrenology to me...