Lately, a lot of things have been changing in my life. For one thing, I have become an accomplished road horse, and my territory has expanded for as much as a mile in several directions. I am brave enough to go down new roads, and into new fields. I have bravely marched past barking dogs, lawnmowers, golf carts, bicycles, "For Sale" signs, and ponds. This past weekend we went more than four miles. We galloped in fields and up and down hills. I came home very sweaty but very satisfied with myself. The only thing I have yet to conquer is motor cycles. I haven't passed one face to face yet, but twice I have seen one in a distance, and I have noticed that they look and sound different from the vehicles that usually go past. I always stop and look, even when they are behind me and a quarter of a mile away. Bicycles are a little surprising because they sneak up silently. Another thing that I notice from a distance is wildflowers. At first I didn't know what they were. Up until now, the earth has been mostly brown or green. Bright splashes of color are very interesting, and I always crane my neck and put a little extra spiff into my trot. The wildflowers and I mutually admire each other for the flash and brilliance we bring into the world.
The best one is the side hill between the indoor and outdoor arenas. That is where Brita always leads me for grass. Now Uncle Dad fenced it in so I can get my own grass. The ends have white tape across them. I went up to look at the tape to see if was something I could get around safely, and it BIT my soft grey nose. Ouch! How exceedingly rude! So, I stay away from the white tape. There is plenty to do in there.
But, most importantly, Brita finally talked Mom into turning me loose like a real horse so I can have a life on the days she doesn't make it to the barn. Some days I wait and wait in the indoor arena or my stall hoping to go outside and enjoy the weather or some tender grass. Now Mom trusts me enough to let me out in one of the outdoor areas all by myself. There are three. The outdoor arena is great for galloping (and rolling in the dirt),
but lousy for eating. There are two doors in the indoor arena that go to outside places. First is the small pipe corral. Someone left the door open, and I found that one myself. I used to be able to go out in that when I was younger, but I got too rambunctious. Now it is conveniently attached to the barn, so I can come and go as I please. Not much grass, but great sunshine and breezes.
There is grass, and a hill to climb, and windows to look in. I can go back inside in the shade if I want. But who would want to be inside when there is so much outside to explore. I'm not allowed out on the grassy hill without adult supervision. I am still so excited about the whole concept. Even after several hours, I am still busy and trotting everwhere I go. Sometimes I get fed up with the flies, and I trot back into the cool shady arena just because I can. But in a minute or two, I am trotting back outside to see what I've missed.
The pipe corral, even though there is more dirt or mud than grass has the added advantage of neighbors. Lucy the Appaloosey wears her most fetching outfits, and tries to talk dirty to me.