My friend, Tiffany, has a horse named Rascal. They’ve been buddies for over six years and she has him boarded at a farm in between Crawfordville and Woodville. The farm has one cow, two bulls, a pregnant Momma horse (!!!), a donkey, five chickens, a pony, three dogs, two cats, more horses, and Rascal. The only horses there when Tiffany and I visited were Apache, Rascal, and the pregnant Momma. She was big. No offense to all current or previously pregnant Mom’s out there but when you get insecure about your size and reach for a gallon of double chocolate chip ice cream, please hold the spoon and remember that you are not carrying a small horse inside your belly.
That Saturday was awesome. My photographer-self freaked out. So many photos to take in so little time!! Tiffany was actually taking care of the animals and I’m rolling around in the dirt, avoiding electric fences, and climbing into chicken pens.
No, I did not get any good photos of the pregnant Momma horse. She was a little hostile and it freaked me out a bit…so, I steered clear. Speaking of steers (I know, terrible), I also avoided the bulls…I had a bad experience (Italian Job) when I was 11, so I avoid bulls.
Okay, okay. Stop nagging. I’ll tell the story: When I was 10 (or thereabouts), my family and I went to a horse ranch for a week in Alabama for our family vacation. There was lots of horseback riding and walking and playing pool and watching TV. No itineraries or agendas – it was relaxing. Well, my sister (Kati) liked to play pranks on me (aka get me into trouble or just stuck somewhere, unable to move). And she’s an artist, so she was sketching a lot of the animals while we were there. One day she asked me to get the bull to move closer to the fence so she could sketch it.
How do you want me to do that, Kati?
Go under the fence and get him to come closer.
My Anne of Green Gables self rose to the challenge. I stuck out my chest and crawled under that barbed wire fence, and stood up, 10 feet from the bull. A small orange-brown calf stood behind the white bull whose sharply pointed horns faced me. The bull and I made eye contact and maintained eye contact as I crept closer, barely lifting my feet. I stopped five feet away, my heart pounding through my chest and into my throat. The bull seemed frozen except for his eyes, when he moved his body forward sharply as if he was going to take a step (or charge) and two seconds later I found myself on the other side of the barbed wire fence. I had hit the ground and rolled 10 feet, popping up on the other side – Ladies and Gentlemen: Stop, Drop, and Roll not only applies in cases of spontaneous combustion. The bull literally laughed at me – like he was scoffing at me and snorting at the same time – and then turned away. The bull had faked me out. Oh, and after all of this, Kati wasn’t even there. She had left as soon as I had gone under the fence. Needless to say, I’m a bit wary around bulls.
Tiffany and I went to lunch in Crawfordville and on our way back to the farm, we saw a graveyard of Fords on the side of the road. Tiffany being the amazing friend she is, turned to me and said, “Want to take photos?” I squealed like a little girl getting her first Cabbage Patch Doll, and Tiffany pulled over. The result: