Saturday, October 20, 2012

What IS That Thing?

Franny is settling in well and has stopped nagging me about my stall habits. She said I shuffle my feet and sigh and make phlegmy throat clearing noises like a little old man in the apartment next door. Nonsense of course - I put it down to a case of new tenant nerves.

She has a positive genius for finding the very rare burr bushes that lean against our paddock fence and consequently her hairstyles have grown more outlandish by the day. Today's creation featured a gravity-defying pyrimid that rose up between her ears like an operatic wig. The male human has named her the equine Lady GaGa (who?), the Woman said she looked like Don King (who?) and Franny rolled her eyes and said anyone with fashion sense could see it was a Fascinator (what?). 

That medical madman animal physician is coming tomorrow to check Franny's teeth. The Woman finds she has lost a bit of weight and wishes her to have more substance going into winter. Knowing Franny, she is envisioning herself with a fashionable eating disorder. She is the polar opposite of LaMolly who is in fact a central vac system disguised as a pony.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Diva Has Arrived

For weeks now, Herself has been dropping hints and making veiled references to a new barn resident but we have been able to ascertain nothing as to the origin, gender, age or even species of this being: for all we knew a gnu or wildebeeste could have been en route.

A few days ago off they went with the box on wheels in tow and were gone for hours. Our friend Jamie arrived and put us to bed at the usual hour but still no sign of the resident humans. Just about the time we get our night feed, there was a commotion and bright lights shone outside in the laneway. I should mention that it was a particularly foggy evening so I assumed the worst ie. we were being invaded by hideous creatures of the night. I was proved correct when Herself hove into view, road-weary and coated in food residue and tea stains.

She turned on the barn lights and said " I have a surprise for you boys". She returned leading the most beauteous creature I have ever beheld. She is a subtle beige colour with black mane and tail. She is long of limb (from my point of view) and refined of visage. Wilson bellowed a loud greeting and I began what I thought was an appropriate salutation comprised of muffled grunts and whuffled moans.

She froze at the doorsill, eyes bugged out and nostrils flared, staring at me in disbelief. "WHAT IS IT?!", she shrieked at Wilson. Wilson was beside himself and began a chorus of "Comeincomeincomein!". This went on for awhile with her shrieking 'WHAT IS IT?!" and Wilson nearly standing on his hind legs, trying to convince her to enter the barn. I whuffled and moaned and still she stayed frozen in place. 

The Woman got a pan with treats in it and managed to get the Beauteous Creature's front feet into the barn. Meanwhile the male human crouched beside me and encouraged me to remain silent for the time being. Thus was Franny, for that is her name, entinced into her room, step by step.

She has never lived inside at night and has taken some time to adjust to the idea. She spent the first two days threatening to murder me but I deduced this was from stress and not personal animosity. We are now on most cordial terms. Wilson is a new man and strides around the paddock muttering "I gotta babe, I gotta babe". I am embarrassed on his behalf but she seems unbothered. She is very self-assured and thus is able to completely ignore Wilson's attempts to call dibs on anything that strikes his fancy. When he tries to hog the hay rack or salt block, she simply sashays past him and says "UhHuh". He doesn't know what to do about her sang froide and pretends it hasn't happened. I am enjoying it all immensely.

Franny hails from Iowa and thus had a long voyage and a border crossing to arrive here but she says the vista of corn and hay fields makes her feel quite at home. I wonder if she understands that when autumn comes, winter follows hard on it's heels...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Lies, Trickery and Rumours

We all know who the liar is around here. The most recent heinous fabrication occurred when Herself casually informed me that my blue chalet/cottage will not remain here permanently but is going to be carted off to the dump some time soon. I can tell you, I am utterly devastated. Especially as she let me hope and dream that I could spend a comfortable winter within it's cosy confines and then suddenly and callously smashed that dream into oblivion.
The trickery enters into the picture via Wilson. Of course. He calls it " ongoing training" and I call it tomfoolery. He says he is strengthening the trainer's reflexes and "bombproofing" him. It looks like a lot of pony shenanigans to me. The trainer gets him spinning nicely on the end of the long rope and Wilson suddenly turns himself inside out (or so it appears) and rushes off in the other direction without being asked. He is corrected and carries on as if butter wouldn't melt in his mouth. Then he does it again.
The Woman has gotten him a harness like mine but in a more rotund size and plans to teach him the art of driving. This should prove quite interesting. I will keep you apprised of his "progress". This is the same pony who had cream applied to his heels because of a touch of something called mud fever and what do you think he did? Licked it off and began foaming at the mouth and blowing bubbles. Herself said he would just have to deal with it because after the compost incident, even if it was toxic and caused him to turn blue she was too embarrassed to call the veterinarian.
And, we have heard very faint rumours of a possible new equine family member but Herself just smirks and says we must be patient. I ask you, what does SHE know of patience?!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Itchy and Scratchy

Last week was the week of seasonal allergies for poor Wilson. His legs became stovepipes, he itched from head to foot and his muzzle broke out in an acne-like rash. He stopped eating (even compost) and said his stomach hurt. I suffered none of the same effects and carried on eating for both of us. It was the least I could do.
The veterinarian came, of course, and left the Woman with various things to give him. His legs were wrapped, his hay soaked and he was generally treated like an invalid. I don't approve of that sort of pandering but what can I do. He even got extra bedding so he could lie propped up with the fan wafting gentle currents over him. I mean, honestly. What if he suddenly had to live wild on the plains, foraging for himself and fighting off wolves? I suppose Herself would trudge after him, fan in hand, catering to his every whim and giving the unfortunate wolves a piece of her mind. He is feeling much better now but still wears what the male human calls his soccer socks at night. I should add that he didn't lose an ounce throughout the ordeal.
We were quite interested yesterday when a blue metal bin showed up and rattled noisily off the back of a vehicle. We were convinced it contained at least one equine and called out in various tones to ascertain if that were the case. Alas, there was no answer. The thing seems to be a rubbish container and of no use to us, although Wilson has expressed a desire to rummage through it. I was led over to it today so I could see for myself that it was indeed equine-free. If it had a roof it might make a nice donkey cottage or chalet where I could retreat to ruminate in peace. A donkey can dream.
Wilson's lessons were cancelled due to his poor health but should be back on track next week when he promises to continue training the trainer.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Equi-Garburator

That would be Wilson, of course.
The event in question unfolded just as the humans were expecting company. Wilson's timing was exquisite. Herself came bustling out to the barn, wheeled in the refuse transporter and threw a large mass of "compost" into it. She regarded us distractedly, said "Ohhhh, flymasks" and disappeared into the barn. Wilson examined the large mass and without pausing for breath, scarfed the lot. The Woman returned, flymasks in hand. She looked highly puzzled and searched the area. Then she looked highly alarmed and, clutching the veterinarian's card, rushed off to make telephonic communication with him.
Wilson ate: a large coffee filter and grounds, bunches of green onions and a quantity of cabbage, amongst other revolting and slimy things. The Woman feared the filter would create some sort of clog in Wilson's digestive workings, causing him extreme distress as well as "weirdin' out the guests" as Wilson put it. I must note here that he developed the worst halitosis I've ever encountered and it endured unabated for the balance of the day.
The veterinarian's diagnosis: a large bran mash was prescribed, and a warning that though Wilson would probably be fine (it seems the filter is a form of fibre) the rich mixture of composting refuse would undoubtedly leave him highly flatulent and rather hyperactive for the near future. He was absolutely right. Wilson trotted around busily, enveloped in a cloud of vile green gas for several hours. The guests seemed quite impressed (or possibly horrified).
Next morning, Wilson was quite recovered. In fact, on his way out the door, he picked up a curry comb, brushed the floor with it, and then stepped across the aisle and began brushing my face. The Woman was highly amused. I was not.
Footnote: I should add that the veterinarian said horses often enjoy eating paper products and in fact one of his clients ate his own export papers, which had been attached to his stall door. Our dear, departed pony Daisy ate the larger part of a questionable publication called "Awake" or "Watchtower" or some such thing, left by a group of religious zealots. She absorbed none of the contents and remained a life-long heathen.

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Shoulder Incident

Wilson is quite embarassed and doesn't wish me to discuss this but I have promised...I told him I would lean toward an empathetic telling.
The Woman, Penny the Dog and Wilson Pony were out walking in the big field at the end of March. Wilson had arrived just the week before and was still settling in. I should point out that the Woman was leading Wilson on a long rope, having just finished spinning him around on the end of the longer rope in the sand area in the paddock. Things were going well, with Wilson occasionally grabbing a snack of the very earliest grass. The sauntering and snacking continued whilst Penny rummaged around in the hedgerow. Next thing we knew, a loud shrieking filled the air and continued unabated. Molly and I were in the barn dozing and we awakened with the rudest of starts.
Wilson says he couldn't locate the source of the siren-like wailing and became a trifle upset but kept his nerves in check. It seems Penny had caught a large rabbit and was holding onto it by it's posterior as they both zoomed across the field. Then, Penny lost her grip and was left with a mouthful of fur. She was so incensed that SHE then began a secondary chorus of screaming. Wilson could not see what was going on and assumed that Armagaddon was upon us, or at least an invasion by hysterical, shrieking aliens. He called to us in garbled tones that we understood as "UNDER ATTACK MONSTERS EVERYWHERE HELPPPP" and we quickly chimed in with advice "RUN RUN RUN HEAD FOR HOME!" So he immediately sprang into action. The Woman later remarked that we were the most useless Greek Chorus in history. (I must research that.)
Unfortunately, in his panic, he forgot that Herself was attached to the end of the rope. They made their way down the field in a series of circles, the Woman's elbow firmly planted in Wilson's neck. And that is how the shoulder came to be a shadow of it's former self.
Shoulder rehab continues and Wilson is working with the trainer as the Woman is rather limited in gesticulating with her right arm. On a brighter note, it's much easier to ignore her commands if necessary and watching her doing things with her left hand is an endless source of amusement.
Wilson says he is staying far away from all things rabbit for the forseeable future. And he claims he is quite contrite although he continues to indulge in all sorts of prankish pony behaviour that leads me question his vow of reformation.
***And once again, I apologize for the mysterious lack of paragraphs. I put them in and poof! gone.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A Word About Wilson...

That word is PONY. He is ten years old, a blotchy design of brown and white and smarter than most other beings on the planet. His nicknames are "Einstein", "Clever Clogs" and "The Pony Calculator". The trainer has described him as "frighteningly bright" and the person who cared for us in the absence of the regular humans called him "Brat Face", "Smarty Pants" and "you little ^%$#^^%$*#".

Wilson arrived in an enormous box on wheels at the end of March - by enormous I mean that it held nine equines. Two of those were called Mike and Tommy and are 19hh. I very much wish we had been able to visit with those equine edifices but they were on their way to somewhere called Calgary.

Molly immediately laid down the law about my being a sacred object around here and threatened to do terrible things to him for three days. Then she announced she quite fancied him. I find him personable and an excellent mutual neck scratcher. He had never lived indoors before but has taken to it so well that he now declares he can't exist without deep bedding, ice cubes in his evening water and his own fan.

The trainer has had some interesting interactions with him but Wilson seems to be gradually bringing him to heel - though the trainer thinks the reverse. The wheels in the pony brain never stop spinning. The woman has ridden him a bit but is still maundering on about her shoulder - the damage to which was caused inadvertently by Wilson...

But that is a story for another day and involves four different species.