Saturday, September 12, 2009
The Morning Walk
Russ planted corn in the field on the west side of my house and in the field behind the barn. He made a rustic dirt road around the circumference of the corn field for me to take walks on. At least I think he made it for me, but the farm trucks and tractors use it too. I walk on it every Saturday morning, and I should walk when I get home from work, but it's been too hot and I'm pretty worn out when I get home. Morning is best. This morning was especially nice. Sunny, not hot, but not cold, just a little morning coolness. I really enjoyed my walk and the sites and smells of living in the country. There is so much to be grateful for and so much to enjoy in my own little world. I passed the windmill!! Some geese flew over, honking as they flew. I waved!! at the back of the cornfield along the road are the up to date facilities used by the squirrels and birds. I just don't get what the red and white striped pole is for. Maybe you hang onto it while you are sitting. I just don't know?? Down the road and across the dry creek from the cornfield there is a riding stable. You can see the corrals and the horses from the little road. Sometimes on a hot summer day I can smell the horse sweat and the leather smell from the stable. It's a smell that takes me back to a happy time in my life when I worked at the Watkins Creek Ranch in West Yellowston Montana. I was 18-19 and it is probably one of my happiest memories. There were a lot of horses, but I claimed Freckles as my own while I was working there. Freckles was a wide backed very tall Appaloosa with big eyes. She had two speeds. She either walked or she galloped, there was no trotting and that is what I liked about her. There was none of that up and down stuff when a horse trots really fast. I prefer bare back because I never learned to ride with a saddle. The bad thing about that is you always had this sweaty stain on your behind and legs. Getting up onto her back was a challenge for me because she was so tall and I was not. I would pull her over by the fence and coax her up against the fence and then jump on her back. Sometimes she would move quickly away just as I was jumping and then I would find myself clinging to her side trying to wiggle myself up onto her back. One of my favorite things that we did there was to take the "dudes" on a midnight ride. The moon would light our way as we rode through the woods. We would chat and ride and sometimes we would all break into song. Freckles felt differently about the night time rides. If she saw dark spots along the road which most likely were logs or rocks, she would start to quiver and she would walk sidways off the path because she was afraid that it was going to get her. A couple of times she jumped suddenly and unexpectedly to the side and Inertia would take me down. I couldn't get mad at her because she was trembling so much that I would have to soothe her and make her see it was alright. Really, the ranch was the best place in the world to be at that time in my life.