Sunday, June 28, 2009

Starvation Averted - For Now

Our hay supply was so low that it had gotten to the point where the woman was driving around the countryside, buying two bales at a time from various humans. Needless to say, I spent my nights fretfully walking the stall mat and the days (between mouthfuls of grass) staring anxiously down our driveway for a glimpse of the food wagon. Finally, around mid-day Friday, we sighted a load rumbling and swaying it's way toward us. We converged on it like Napoleon's troops arriving at a Moscow bakery after a brisk winter walk from France.

Unfortunately, Herself had barred and chained all doors and gates so our initial plan to actually climb aboard the wagon was met with failure. Fortunately, delivery of hay involves a lot of spillage and we waded into that with alacrity. The female offspring of the hay man was quite smitten with Doc who in turn thought she was quite wonderful - they have the same colour hair - red - although she is not a "vitinry". The offspring stood there for ages and when her father asked her why she was rooted to the spot, she said "He's chewing on my shirt" in quite a pleased manner. The woman growled at Doc and that was that. Jack simply refused to go near the girl just in case she had medical intentions.

Jack celebrated the arrival of winter provisions by instigating a vigourous wrestling match as soon as the wagon rattled away. My word, he's an agile old man with a treasure trove of moves accumulated over the decades. Last night he upped the ante even further. He hid in the greenery and ambushed me like a crazed predator. We bolted in and out of the trees and Jack displayed dressage moves not seen outside the Spanish Riding School. He twirled on one hind hoof, he got down on both hocks and leapt into the air, he spun in circles like a cow pony and he got me in a neck vise lock and spun me around til I saw stars. On and on it went, with me vainly suggesting a truce be called. Finally, he gave a series of massive bucks and trotted off with his tail whirling and his head elevated and tilted rakishly, all the while snorting victoriously. I can barely move today - he's as fresh as paint. The woman took photos and put them on my picasa page www.picasaweb.google.com/ponymaid so the world can see that ancient can also be alarmingly agile.

I received some very exciting gifts lately and have had Herself take photos so you can see them. The first is an admirable sign sent to me by Bouncy Dog via one of his humans. I knew that boy was made of the right stuff when I met him at my party. He is a huge admirer of all things donkey - including Ben and Jerry, whom he guards assiduously. Thoughtful dog that he is, he sent me a token of his affection. Thanks also to Gayle the human who acted as intermediary in facilitating the chain of events.

The other gifts are from my very large friend CindyLouWho. A mysterious box appeared on Friday and the contents are extraordinary. I will tell you about them in my next post and will chivy the woman into creating some images of them. Thank goodness for friends near and far; it makes my state of oppression bearable.

11 comments:

Lori said...

I don't think Jack is the only one showing some impressive moves. Sheaffer, you were rocking and rolling with the best of them. Way to go. Now that the winter hay is in, you can afford to expend a little energy. Our hay here in Saskatchewan in just starting to be harvested as well. Ohh the delicious smell of fresh cut hay.

billie said...

Sheaffer, my gosh, I was on the edge of my seat looking at the slide show of donkey moves.

I agree with Lori, you were doing some SRS moves too, and there is one shot where it appears you momentarily grew a unicorn horn!

The gift from Bouncy Dog is wonderful and I can't wait to see what CindyLouWho has sent you.

I feel I have to ask, although this is probably sacred donkey knowledge:

is there a secret Donkey School where all these amazing donkey moves are passed down through the ages? I have noticed that all donkeys have some similar moves that are unique and quite stunning.

CindyLouWho said...

Oh My Sheaffer! You are so lucky to have new hay! Here in New England we have had nothing but rain for the past 8 weeks. =:-0 A tiny amount of hay got cut before it started raining, but as of now I'm quite worried that we will get no fresh hay at all. We do have enough to last for another couple of weeks, but that is because the hay is so bad we don't eat much of it. Fortunately, we do have access to a lot of grass. Now you can rest easy, knowing that there is enough hay for the winter, even if the woman doesn't give any of you as much as you deserve.

Love the picasa pics! Doc & Molly trying to help with the unloading is good, but they aren't passing anything to the two lookouts for the woman sneaking up from behind! As far as Jack's celebration goes, it looks to me like you are giving as good as you are getting in most of the pictures. That one move by you is something the Lippizaners would envy.

I actually see 2 or more shots of you with a unicorn horn... are you hiding pegasus wings somewhere too?

ponymaid said...

Saskatchewan? - Lori, how nice to see you here! The woman has told me about your province - wheat as far as the eye can see, nothing obstructing a donkey's eye view and some of the friendliest humans around. It's definitely on my list of places to visit when I begin my grand tour (but maybe not in the winter...). I'm quite tickled with the idea of rocking and rolling - the woman says I mostly just roll, owing to body shape. We have had much rain here and were lucky to get in a batch of dry hay - they also sprinkle salt on it, which is some sort of preservative and, from my point of view, a flavour enhancer.

Ahh, Billie, you noticed the unicorn horn. I have often wondered if I am perhaps at least partly descended from a mystical tribe. Jack says I just have brain cramp from all the thinking. The origins of the collected donkey moves are shrouded in the mists of time. We are born knowing the full repertoire, which differ quite markedly from those of horses. I'm pondering the possibility of a donkey dressage extravaganza (without that Rollkur thing). Would your boys be interested?

CindyLou, I'm quite worried about your winter food supply. The wretched rain has ruined hay here as well and many horses are biting their hoofs in worry. You may have to go on an all Stud Muffin diet. We are enjoying your gifts very much indeed though I fear your generosity may have left you somewhat short. I'm glad you noticed the selfishness on the part of the horses when it comes to sharing food off the wagon - no milk of human kindness (or any other species) in those two. Just gluttonous vacuums is what they are. You saw unicorn horns as well? Hmmm, I'm more and more convinced of my other worldly origins.

billie said...

I am sure Rafer Johnson and Redford would be thrilled to take part in a donkey dressage extravaganza - they love showing off their moves! I'm sure would be happy to go on a very effective donkey strike should anything remotely related to Rollkur be attempted.

Sheaffer, I do believe you ARE descended from some mystical tribe of donkeys. Even aside from the unicorn horn, you have a certain look in the eye and means of expression that could only come from a very magical place.

I venture to say that Rafer Johnson has it too.

Redford I believe must have gypsy blood in him - I can see him with a band of like-minded donkeys, traveling the world with small packs of stud muffins to tide them over between grassy fields.

Buddy said...

Hay Sheaffer - oh what fun at your house. All the HAY - looks like heaven to me. And did I see my beautiful Molly in several pics - oh thank you so much - I was needing a Molly fix. She has the nicest rear end and tail on any equine in the whole world.

Now you and Jack - well how much fun was that! If you are sore this morning he is hurting even more. You to were having a ball - too bad there wasn't a video.

Take care my fren!

XXOO

ponymaid said...

Billie, I believe you are correct - Rafer and I are brothers in spirit. Now, Redford seems to have more of the TJ elan and thirst for adventure travel - without the lunatic element, of course. I will begin planning the Donkey Dressage Exravaganza - do you think the person you mentioned on your blog (Philippe Karl?) would act as judge? I can guarantee he will be speechless when he see our creative side. Maybe it's best if he takes a nerve tonic first - some of our moves have been known to leave humans writhing on the ground.

Buddy, I reluctantly passed your compliments on to Molly and received a smirk and tail swish for my troubles. She's very proud of that voluminous tail but won't admit to the nightly cleaning and brushing by the woman required to keep it looking that way. I wish I could bottle the fresh hay smell and send it to you. It's definitely a whiff of heaven, nirvanah and pure bliss rolled into one. Aromathereapy at it's best.

billie said...

Philippe Karl is right up in your neck of the woods this month, Sheaffer, so perhaps you can send Doc on an adventure to lure him over to your farm for the Donkey Dressage showcase. I do not know Mr. Karl personally but I have an odd sense that he would be a kindred spirit of donkeys the world over.

I had to laugh about Redford sharing some of the TJ elan - it is true! He has a look that is sort of "devious costumed as innocence."

Buddy said...

A swish of the tail - my heart is a flutter.

ponymaid said...

Billie, I have sent a telegram to M. Karl inviting him to visit me at my quarters so we can discuss the future of Donkey Dressage. He is only a half-hour away from me at his local clinic and I feel sure he will want to consult on this important project. I will banish Herself to the manure pile to ensure minimal embarrassment.

Oh Buddy, if you only knew the amount of diva-like tail swishing from the hindquarters of La Molly. I'm surprised her tail isn't worn down to a broomstick.

Buddy said...

HAy Sheaffer and everyone - Happy 4th of July. We had fireworks last night - mom was worried I'd freak out - but they were far enough away that I watched them intently - how do they do that? Gonna have more tonight!

Hope everyone has a great day!