Sunday, July 25, 2010

The auctioneer is bidding for a box of fading years

Sovey is trying to figure out where all that junk came from. So are we. We are having an auction on Monday evening here at the farm. We have cleaned out my grandmother's house and the chicken coop and corn crib and the upstairs of the barn. Our yard sales last summer just grazed the surface so we moved up to the big leagues by calling in a professional. I don't know what the horses are going to think of the tent and all the people and the auctioneer's microphone. Last summer, the farmhouse tenants had a huge party and the horses LOVED it. You can read about their funny antics that night here. They are very sad that the farmhouse is empty now - no activity for them to watch anymore.

Sovey says, "Hmm, what do we have here?" This photo was taken on Saturday night - he wasn't nearly this brave on Friday evening!
Can I just say that I adore these two horses and I have enjoyed watching their different reactions these past few days? Sometimes I feel divided having two horses because one is always left out. I imagine it might be easier to only own one horse because everything thing I do involves two times the work. The up side of more work, though, is the lovely juxtaposition of their different personalities. I get to enjoy each horse's temperament in new situations. They are sooooo different!!!

Sovey was first out of the pasture on Friday evening after a whole day of watching us assemble all our auction items on the grass. He snorted and stared, but still cautiously made his way forward to the apple tree. He was electric, ready to spring up at any moment. I am not as confident on the ground as I am on a horse's back, but it was 95 degrees at 6:30pm so I opted out of riding. I reassured Sovereign that it was ok and that the junk would not get him. He slowly calmed and by the time I put him back in the pasture, he was completely bored with the auction.
Next, it was Pie's turn to investigate. Let me just preface this part by saying that Pie is scary looking in the pasture. He pushes and shoves behind the gate and he looks and acts like a giant, aggressive woolly mammoth. Pie's presentation is actually a mirage and it has taken me almost a year to figure this all out. His "look" is partly because of his huge size, but mostly because I do not like to cut manes and foretops. To be honest, he is absolutely wild looking now and it is a shame and all my fault. He has an expressive intelligent, even refined, face under all that foretop and mane hair. But, I like the protection it offers him against bugs and the sun. It seems to me to be Nature's insulation. His behaviour is immediately subdued the second I enter the pasture and put his halter over his head. I am always amazed at how responsive Pie is to the slightest pressure on the halter. He is able to maneuver his big body with slow grace and softness through gates and in the barn and around me. (He is also this soft under saddle too, quickly yielding to gentle leg pressure.) I think of Pie like I do Zoe, the Gentle Giant Bernese Mountain Dog we petsit. Both are huge and yet careful not to crush smaller creatures (like me in Pie's case!). Ok, so you get the picture - behind the fence Pie looked like he might breathe fire on the auction items and freak out and break loose from me and run for the hills, but I knew that he would be the well-behaved sweet puppy that he is. He was unbelievably calm. Below he is in the twilight, munching apples and taking it all in. No worries for him! Sovey, tried his old trick of racing and whinnying to get Pie away from the apple tree, but it didn't work. Pie wasn't phased. Then, Sovey tried something new, which cracked me up and illustrates how smart Sovey really is. He found out that he can position himself in the pasture exactly in line with the tennis court backboard and Pie and I can't see him at all. He stands there and squeals and whinnies and it sounds like he might be far off. Pie doesn't fall for it, so Sovey pops out and looks at Pie to see if it worked. When he sees Pie still eating apples under the tree, Sovey hides behind the backboard and tries it again!!!! Can you believe it? I wish I had a videographer with me at all times!

This basket, below, offered some excitement. The auction men had found it in the corn crib and tossed it out by the apple tree. It was new to both horses and they each investigated it. Sovey made sure it was safe by snorting on his approach to scare off anything dangerous, but Pie smelled it thoroughly. In fact, Pie smelled every inch of the ground where the auction men had walked thoroughly. It was hysterical. I call him "The Bloodhound" and he lived up to his name. He pushed his nose into the grass and walked around the whole property like a equine vacuum cleaner. He looked exactly like a search and rescue dog! I have never seen anything like it. When he came to the back of the barn, his nose went up the barn to the door handle on the corn crib that the men had apparently touched!

On Friday night's investigation, Pie would sniff an item and then toss it down in the grass like he was finished inspecting it. You can see flower stand that was tossed by Pie in the background of this photo.
I am anxious to see what the horses think of the carnival atmosphere on Monday night. I will turn the electric fence on - probably more to keep human hands out than the horses in! I think the horses are going to enjoy watching it all unfold!


  1. Funny how they react to new things like that.

  2. PH cool...a human carnival...for the equines to see!
    Too funny about the Pie test...if it can stand up to me, lets see what it does laying down!
    Jules, I so understand what you mean with the division of self between tow horses. I have my sissy's mare Pantz, again for a time(maybe longer).
    I LLLOOOVVVE her so. She is polar opposite of my mare in the respects of being a lead mare. She has had many babies and takes care of everyone..does not mind me ponying others and is a rootin' tootin' trail pony! (actually..after I wrote that, I remembered that, MY MARE, toots up every hill!)

    I was adoring Pantz today, in her stall after a morning ride and ponying adventure with our new boarder, and Wa mare looked over the wall like..what? Pantz actually looks at me, and responds so differently than Wa mare.
    I may NOT allow my sissy to take her back after this...I cried for 2 weeks the last time!

    Have fun with the sale!!! Give those TB faces a kiss for me and hugs to B and Maisie girl! Oh and pet noodlebug!( HA..spell check wants to change that to doodlebug!)

  3. Looks like you've been working hard to get ready for that auction. I hope it went well. I'm sure Pie and Sovey think it was all for them. They are so cute with their inquisitive natures. Yes, having one horse to care for is soooo easy after caring for 2 (I can't imagine having more than 2). But the interaction and the herd mentality (even a herd of 2) is so interesting to watch. And they are all individuals, which adds to the fun.


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