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Saturday, December 08 2012


Susan asked how Joe did in the parade.

Well, let's start with The Bath.  You see, the problem with beautiful black and white horses is that they like rolling in dust in dry weather, and rolling in mud in wet weather. At no point do they actually like water baths (except of course, if you are trail riding through a stream, then they will stop, drop, and roll with the best of them) But I digress . . .

Suffice it to say, Homeboy needed a bath. In December. With no hot water. And although I waited until late in the day when it was warm (high 70s) it was still cold water because, well, it's December.   Joe was less than thrilled with the arrangement. He has a thick winter coat and it took forever to rinse him, thus exceeding ALL of his patience and mine.  We finally gave up on his lower legs and decided to borrow baby powder from Dear Draft Horse Friends (Doug & Debbie) who were carrying Santa in the parade.

 Prior to Santa's arrival

So I loaded up Joe and headed toward the parade.  Keep in mind, that at this point I have not bothered to introduce Joe to the concept of wearing Christmas lights. I merely have a grocery sack of lights that I purchased at the last minute that Other Half kindly inserted batteries into the night before. I had yet to plan out how I was going to put the lights on Joe.

You really should plan this stuff out, but I live much like Scarlett O'Hara: "I'll think about that tomorrow."

Well, tomorrow was here, and I still didn't have a plan. Whatever. Jesus loves me and so does Joe. (well, Joe likes me. And he's a patient horse, so it's practically the same thing.) I unloaded Joe amid all the hustle and bustle of everyone else unloading and outfitting their unsuspecting excited livestock for the Sparkling Rodeo Parade Of Lights.

As I watched the rodeos around me,  dressed Joe, I decided that Joe and I could do with much fewer strands of lights than I had bought.  He ended up looking like this:

 Joe had lights around his breast collar and on this garland. I opted against lights around his butt and feet, not because Joe objected, but for once in my life, I remembered my physics:

For Every Action There Is An Equal And Opposite Reaction.

Joe is a calm horse. Then again, I doubt he's ever had a strand of Christmas lights slide under his tail and give him a 'wedgie.'  I don't know for sure, I'm just guessin'.  And as I watched people put all manner of things on their horses, I decided that I had enough things to worry about from items on OTHER horses. Joe and I would just keep it simple. We were clean, and that's doing good in December.

We had a chance to relax walk around and look at the floats and other riders.

 Yes, that is a real Bethlehem scene on a flatbed trailer - complete with a real donkey and real goats. It was awesome! (But I made mental note to keep Joe away from that float, lest donkeys and goats become airborne in the middle of the parade.)

Dear Friend Mindy owns Frodo, Joe's BFF (Best Friend Forever). Joe and Frodo are buddies. Frodo arrived shortly before the parade began. We hastily flung the rest of Joe's colored lights on Frodo.

Like me, Mindy hadn't bothered to introduce Frodo to lights prior to the parade. Like Joe, Frodo took it in stride. Other Half arrived minutes before we mounted up. He objected to Joe's 'minimalist' look. Other Half wanted Joe decorated like a Griswald Christmas.

No problem. He can ride him. Nevermind.

The sun went down. Santa arrived. And we all lined up. Christmas carols blared from sound systems all around us. The street sweeper roared to life and followed right behind the horses. As you can imagine, horses were freaking. Frodo, who is scared of motorcycles was less than amused by the decorated ATV mule that followed us closely.  Since so many other horses were freaking out, even though Frodo resembled a fractious Thoroughbred being led to the starting gate by his solid pony (Joe), we didn't particularly stand out. 

The streets were lined with children who darted into our path friendly kids. The air crackled and chimed with Christmas music and jingle bells from floats and panicky prancing horses.   It was a horse nightmare lovely experience. I had a blast. Then again, I was on one of the calm horses. Joe took everything in stride. Frodo bounced against us for the length of the parade but they switched roles when we returned to the trailer.

I loaded Joe into the trailer and Calm Mr. Joe went batshit crazy at the thought of being separated from his BFF Frodo. He began bucking and sitting back in the trailer. I gawked at him in disbelief for a moment before Mindy rocked me back to reality by asking,

"Want me to just load Frodo up beside him and you can drive him home?"

Does that sound like we're enabling? Ahhhh . . .yeah.  Did we do it?

Yessirree Bob!  As soon as Frodo stepped up into the trailer, Joe calmed right down.  And so, the two best friends drove to Frodo's house while Mindy drove behind us. Other Half drove his police truck behind Mindy and lighted up the highway so we could unload safely.  Joe was happy. Frodo was happy. Mindy and I were happy.  Life was good.

Overall it was a wonderful night filled with friends and fellowship, and who could ask for anything more?









Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 08:36 am   |  Permalink   |  3 Comments  |  Email
I love it. You have a very wonderful way of telling a story. Where did you find that cute Santa Colorado saddle pad(ish) thing?
Posted by Nicole G on 12/12/2012 - 11:34 AM
You are NOT gonna believe it. That saddle pad(ish) thing is a tree skirt from Wal-Mart!
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 12/12/2012 - 06:09 PM
Wow. I'm on my way to Walmart now to find one. That's awesome.
Posted by Nicole G on 12/16/2012 - 12:28 PM

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