Our dream for the Farm has always been to return it to it’s glory days of years past, and this summer was our biggest step towards that goal. Our days , rain or shine, were spent putting up fences and rebuilding the big barn, making it ready for our expanding family. At the start of the summer, our plan was to add two horses, Alex and Chaser, to our fold, with no immediate plans for adding any others. Two was a good start, and the learning curve would be easier. In July, we had crossed paths with a beautiful paint mare, and before we knew it, Diva had been added to the list. Our preparation had it’s share of setbacks, including having to completely rebuild half of the barn’s floor due to rot, but we slowly and surely made progress. With the finish line in sight, we learned that Chaser, the old man of the three, had become ill and passed away. Chaser had been one of the sweetest horses we’d ever met, and he would have been a great companion to Alex and Diva, as well as to us. Though we were sad, we knew that we still had a lot of work left to do, and we put our noses to the proverbial grindstone. We set a date and made arrangements, and before we knew it, the day had come.
The day we had planned for and looked forward to for months brought with it a steady rain, but even the sogginess of the day could not dampen our excitement. Alex was the first to arrive that morning, and the moment he stepped out of the trailer was magical for me. Over the last couple of years, I had come to have a deep bond with Alex, and knowing that he was actually here, actually a part of the Farm now, was nearly overwhelming. He walked into the barn and claimed his stall as if he had been here all his life. It had been a hard summer for him with the other horses at his old home, and he seemed to sense that this was where he belonged, with the person that he belonged to. Knowing that Diva wouldn’t be arriving until late in the day, I spent as much time with Alex as I could. As the day wore on, he began to get restless, and I started to worry about what state he would be in by the time of Diva’s arrival. Darkness, as well as heavy rain, had started to fall by the time her previous owners pulled into the driveway. While still in her trailer, she trumpeted her arrival with a loud whinny, and a few moments later, an answer was returned from the barn. “The moment of truth” I thought, as she was led in through the large, open door. Alex was at full attention as he watched her walk into her stall, which is right next to his. Diva gave quick inspection to her stall, as we quietly shut the door behind her and watched with eager anticipation. Alex quietly blew through his nose as if to say “Hello there, friend.”, and as Diva approached the bars that separate the two stalls, Alex stuck his nose through to her side. Oblivious to us, their noses touched and they quietly greeted each other, causing all who witnessed it to catch their breath. To me, it was at that moment that our farm had truly become “The Farm”, and I stood beside the Man, both of us not daring to breath for fear of breaking the spell. We quietly exited the barn, leaving them to their business of getting acquainted, and visited with Diva’s previous owners. After they left, we went back into the barn. Alex and Diva were standing next to each other and looking at us as if to say “What now?” What now, indeed…
It’s been a week since our two horses arrived, and the learning curve is certainly a steep one. We have spent countless hours with them, enjoying their presence, and watching them bond and play in their paddock that we worked so hard at to prepare. We’ve also had our fair share of drama during the past week, including a midnight visit from the vet a few nights ago when Alex decided to wrestle with his stall door and came up a little bit on the short end of the tussle. As horrifying as that night was, it brought home to us how fragile these proud, majestic horses truly are, and how much they depend on us for their care. It has been a week of new beginnings and discovery, with a healthy dose of education and shoveling on our part. But it has also been a week of quiet contentment and gaining of trust, and certainly of love returned ten fold. We have come full circle, the four of us. Alex and Diva are home, and they are now a part of the family…part of the Farm…
Well i have to say this blog is all that i knew it would be. It brought tear’s to my eyes as i read the story and how it evolved. It’s plain that Alex and Diva were meant to be together.
Great job Rick.
October 22, 2011 at 10:15 am
Thank you, Aunt Ruby…:-)
October 22, 2011 at 3:42 pm
Once again Rick you have filled my heart with warmth ,and my eyes with tears. A truly beautiful story about two wonderful men and their dream. Alex and Diva are very lucky to be a part of your family. I Love the picture of the two of them at the top. I have now subscribed to receive an e-mail any time your write a new blog. I hate missing any. You write beautifully!
October 23, 2011 at 1:26 pm
Thank you, Laureen…:-)
October 23, 2011 at 2:15 pm
again a heart touching story 🙂 Can I come live at your farm ? LOL you are living the life I dream of, but cant seam to make happen 😦
November 8, 2011 at 9:15 pm