I can understand why medieval farmers slept with their animals – in the same building I mean…a thought that occurred to me quite often as I’ve been mucking out the stalls, hauling water and stuffing hay bags this winter. Let me tell you just how I got to be a stable hand.
You may recall last fall I posted about how I had moved my boy Romy because our stable had become a co-operative venture and I was reluctant to take on barn work for 14 horses. Well if ever a non verbal creature could communicate his annoyance, Romy certainly left no doubt he was unhappy at the new place. He refused to be led, pushed me around, wouldn’t stand still to be groomed, was challenging when I was in the saddle and was just generally uncooperative and need it be added with a 1,000 lb animal – a little intimidating. Everyone in the new barn had advice usually involving showing him who’s boss with a crop or a nose chain – not my style at all.
Thinking about how happy he had been with his old herd I revised my opinion of manual labour and back we went to the co-operative barn. Most of the hard work is in winter and how long can that last? Romy immediately fell back in with his old crowd, including some nice mares, and his mellow old self returned.
I think of his happiness at 7am when I look down at the temperature…not including windchill
0r when I’m out breaking the ice from the water trough because the heater can’t keep up.
I think of him as I slip and slide up the manure pile with yet another wheelbarrow full. Did I expect to be doing this in my retirement from a job that never involved physical labour? Not exactly but he’s happy and it’s cheaper and more fun than the gym and Ivy gets to come along too!
Oh yes, sleeping in the same building as livestock? At least their body heat usually keeps it above zero!
Love the photo of Romy and i can see you why you love him.
I must say that Romy appears to have a smile on his face. Amazing how he could communicate his displeasure. It does look like a lot of work but you obvious love for Romy, not to mention getting the workout and saving money, seems to make up for it. As to the slip in the manure pile well perhaps that one could do without. 🙂
Touching devotion! 🙂 But they didn’t sound quite ‘your’ (plural 🙂 ) style at the new place. What a slender, fit creature you will be come Spring 🙂 Good for you!
Fit and slender are not necessarily the same thing;-) would need to give up my love of sweets to get to the slim part but I can haul a mean bale of hay these days!
I daren’t say a thing- I’m sitting here munching Mother’s Day chocolates 🙂 🙂
Forgot to say “Hi” to cute little Ivy. ❤
Yes Ivy is a sweetheart – the neighbourhood kids come around to ask if she can come out to play!
I love your dedication. Romy is really handsome and I’m so glad he’s happy again. Do take care as you slip and slide up the manure pile. I can’t imagine myself doing that, but you’re obviously a better woman than I am. 😀
Or sillier;-) He does take me for a wonderful trail ride even in the deep snow so it’s rewarding both ways.
Ah well, that’s a nice reward indeed. 🙂
I’m impressed. It sounds like a lot of work–but definitely worth it. This post also takes me back to my farm roots. Over the years I’ve grown to appreciate the value of farm labor–and agree that it can just as rigorous as any gym workout.
It’s so true about the workout and I do have a whole new appreciation of what actual farm life must be like. There are many positive things about the co-operative approach of sharing the burden😊
Wow! That’s what I call diligent. Good on you too .. He’s happy, you are fitter and happy too I bet! What a lovely post 😊
Thank you! Then again you’d know better than me about actual farm work although in much nicer weather😉
“I think of his happiness …” This is a true morality play. Good for you.
Thank you for your supportive comments. Nice to hear from you.
That is quite some work you got yourself into. At least you have company and hopefully have found yourself a friend. But stay warm!
It’s much easier to stay warm when you’re busy as I have rediscovered😊.
Lucky, lucky Romy, he certainly made his displeasure known, and you listened. I don’t think the other people were very good horse people suggesting those harsh treatments. Spring will soon arrive and think how fit you will be, and better off without having to pay gym fees.
The other thing that is nice about being back in this barn is that we all have the same positive approach to our horses. As is so often the case we’re all women too. Thank you for your encouraging comments
I can understand why Romy wanted to go back into that positive environment.
You must be one of the healthiest pensioners on the planet. I never suspected you were ‘a pensioner’ in any case. You sound much too young and healthy!
Healthy🤔? I’m just trying to stay active, physically and mentally as long as I can. You sound like you are much the same! Thanks for the kind words anyway.
How sweet of you! And … stay warm my friend!
As the locals say – it’s not what the weathers like, as long as you’re dressed properly! Not completely convinced of that so bring on Spring😄
When people bleat on about ‘lurve’ and making small sacrifices for those they care about – your story should be told. Rearranging your life, time, physical effort and freezing temperatures to ensure your horse has a better existence is real love in action. Effort beyond duty – you are an inspiration. Lucky Romy. And kisses to the beautiful Ivy. 😌
What a lovely comment – thank you. Ivy seems to be enjoying her new ‘farm dog’ outings. Although she doesn’t necessarily enjoy the more frequent grooming she hasn’t put the two together!
How very noble you are! I am glad Romy is back with his friends.
Thanks! Noble isn’t the first word that springs to mind when dealing with manure so I really appreciate the thought😊 I have received happiness back too, so it does work both ways.
you get points for this…don’t know exactly what you win but you get the points anyway.
Hmm – besides the happiness of Romy I think I also proved to myself that I was physically stronger than I realized and although it was a painful process, that has been sort of neat😊.
that is indeed a worthwhile prize…keep it up! Winter is almost over.
What can I say…..happy horse, happy person. So glad Romy is feeling okay now.
I think that sums it up nicely. There are so many schools of thought about how to get along with your horse and discovering that there are subtle (and not so subtle) signals we give each other has changed my outlook in other aspects of my life…nice to hear from you.
A new way of life! Great to hear from you.
Old Romy is happy again with his old friends, you and Ivy are getting good exercise, and winter won’t be here much longer. Easy for me to say with the mild winters we have in this part of Oregon. You are a very, very good person to take Romy’s feelings into account.
We live in a snow belt with Lake Simcoe, Huron and Georgian Bay nearby so it’s a fact of life I’m afraid. But a trail ride through a winter wonderland can go a long way to making up for cold early mornings😊. I get joy along with the work so lucky me.
What you do never ceases to amaze me.
I have a shovel and barrow with your name on it😘
Your Ivy looks like a slightly larger version of my pup. She only weighs about 10 lbs, but she can sure make her feelings known, too! Had to chuckle at your sacrifice. It’s probably better for you, too! Though you still have my sympathy at having to do all that in the freezing cold.
Yes they have no trouble communicating as long as you’re willing to listen. Ivy is a mid size poodle although with her non traditional cut, it’s sometimes hard to tell. I don’t get a lot of sympathy from the locals about the weather – ‘no such thing as too cold’, they say, ‘just not properly dressed’😉
My pup is in the toy poodle category and she also has the ‘puppy cut’ which I’m gathering is the same as your non traditional. I really dislike the cut they give the poodles at the dog shows. They look way too ridiculous.
I agree but we go quite short all over in the summer because as cold as it is here in the winter, the summer is very hot.
I’ve heard differing opinions on short for summer. Both our pups are black, so I’ve often gone short (even tho our summers don’t get excessively hot) but then her hair/fur gets really hot in the sun. I’ve been told by “some” that having it longer provides insulation from the heat of the sun. It’s hard to tell who to believe. Probably just best to keep them out of the sun when it’s truly hot.
Talk about true love…. What we won’t do for our animals. They do seem to have the ability to share their thoughts and feelings as well love their love. For the amount of joy that they bring into our lives we are usually willing to go above and beyond. Sounds like you’ve made an enormous sacrifice for your sweet Romy. Great way to look at it, cheaper and more rewarding than the gym!! Also during the below freezing temperatures… all I can say is that is love and dedication! 😊.
My two animal companions bring joy into my life in so many ways…so for the time being this is a good way to give back. Bring on that spring though😊
Animals are so wonderful at making their dissatifaction known. I thought a 20 lb cat was a challenge. Whoa – you have your hands full with a highly opinionated 1000 lb horse!!
Romy’s blissful return back to his former stable is hilarious 😀
There are times I have to laugh or I’d cry – and my tears would freeze😉.
You have my sympathy … even if I can’t help but giggle.