The wind is howling across the chimney. I don’t know about the rest of the world, but the North wind is mythic with horse people in
the Sacramento Valley. It is a drying wind, here. It makes summer days hotter, and winter days colder. And it turns the most plodding old horse into a silly snorting nut! So, when I heard that the prediction for today was clear with a North wind advisory, I was less than thrilled!
“It is the north wind that lashes men into Vikings …” Ouida
It’s long been held, by the horseman in our area, that the North wind stirs horses up. Even in the heat of summer, when the North wind is hot and dry, it rarely fails to stir the laziest horse into a snorting fiend. And it lived up to its reputation today! Tally was the only one able bodied for work, Nash and Coffee recovering from bruising and an abscess, respectively. The wind was just stirring when I took her out, but it was enough. Yesterday she was calm and attentive – today she saw trolls at every corner. A grounded branch across the fence, fallen three weeks ago, was suddenly hiding gremlins! But, we persevered and had a respectable session.
The two Appy boys were not immune to the North wind. It began with Coffee whirling around his turnout in high style. The ground is still somewhat slick, so we decided to fetch the two boys before Coffee did any harm to himself. My mother’s unflappable boy was now snorting at the gate he’s been through hundreds of times, and spooking at unknown phantoms swirling in the wind. My Nash spooked at fluttering leaves, and pranced next to me, eventually whirling around and rearing up several times in a row. We eventually made it back to the barn with all of our feet firmly on the ground.
By far the most fun of the day was had by Noble and his “uncle” Java. We gave them the arena for turnout, the footing being currently far more reliable. In between heart-stopping moments, when my young man would slam full into the fence, unable to execute the sliding stops his “uncle” Coffee had taught him, I managed to capture some of the fun in pixels.
So, howl on North wind! I know that you’ll be gone soon, and my horses will be back to normal once again! Until then, I guess they’re entitled to some silliness.
Be good to your horses!