Saturday, September 22, 2012

I met the nicest mule today.  He reminded me so much of Tonka it kinda made me secretly teary eyed.  His mannerisms were similar, but he also made me think of how much Tonka loved mules, and how I wanted to get him a mule someday (and I would ride the mule when Tonka was no longer able to do the long rides).

The guy who owned this mule had nothing but praise for mules in general, and you could tell he absolutely adored his.  It made me think, maybe I'm doing the wrong thing rushing into getting another mustang, instead of saving up and realizing my dream of having a mule.  But I think this horse is the right guy at this point, and maybe he'll make me more ready to be a mule person later in life.  Just think how much I've already learned from Tonka, and Scout, and Bella, and all of them.  With more mustang experience, I might become a better mule person.  Mules and mustangs are similar in a lot of ways.

I also met a very nice thoroughbred.  I've decided they're one of my favorite breeds.  I don't think I've met one I didn't like.  We had a nice Arab, a nice quarter horse, and two nice Icelandics also.  I think my daughter would love a stocky little Icelandic.  They seem to be very smart though!  A smart horse isn't always a good thing.  :)

I love my job assisting with equine dentistry.  The lady I work with is a dedicated equine dentist, the best in the area (she's also a vet but doesn't do general practice anymore, and was once a farrier).  Anyone who goes to the trouble to get her to work on their horse rather than using a regular vet really has their horse's best interests at heart.  So pretty much all the horses we see are well loved and healthy, and mostly well behaved.  You don't see any neglected animals.  It's really nice. 

I've been meaning to tell a funny story about Blue for a while now.  When we were camping before Tonka's accident, we were playing around in a water crossing.  We rode across, and poor little Blue panicked, he thought we were leaving him behind, so he jumped in and swam across.  He's never been comfortable with swimming.  Loves to wade, but he avoided deep water.  So I turn around and see him, his head high in the air, and his little paws going, "plip-plop, plip-plop, plip-plop" so loudly while he tried to stay high in the water.  I couldn't help but laugh at the poor guy.  I really wish you could have been there!  It was hilarious.

Enlarge to see the Plip-Plop-Puppy:
(Ignore my disgraceful holding of the saddle horn.  I was still in a lot of pain from him falling down with me the night before, and I was bracing to avoid any jolting from him stepping on big rocks underwater.)
Still laughing:
Love this butt.  Miss him so much.
That was our second to last ride together.  There are no pictures of our last ride, later that day.  We went searching for an errant cow but we didn't find her.

Huckleberry & John & Scout:
Huckleberry has a much more dignified way of swimming, quietly and low in the water, like an otter.  But here's a good pic I found of him from a couple years ago.  He will cool off on the trail any way he can.  Note that he's stretched out on his belly with his legs behind him.  :)  Makes for a smelly companion in the truck on the way home.


Cindy Durham said...

I have several comments for this post.
#1 I believe that Tonka would want you to continue with your task of giving mustangs a new life. Those are his "kin" and he would want you to look out for them. (although I also know a whole lot of people who swear that Mules are some kind of special)

#2 There are a lot of days that I still hold on to the saddle horn, nothing wrong with it if you feel you need too. Just depends on who I am riding and what we are doing and how they feel underneath me.

#3 My 5 favorite smells in the sweat, saddle leather, mesquite smoke, fresh cut hay, and a wet dog. (my mom raises Labradors so wet dogs reminds me of my childhood)

I love your posts.

Linda said...

I really like Cindy's #3--those are my favorite smells, too. And, I agree with her #1--when you adopt a Mustang you're getting more than a horse--and that really does honor Tonka's spirit. And I also agree with her #2--not a big deal to grab onto that horn when you need it. That horn has saved my butt on several bucking occasions.

It's weird, our different ways of looking at mules. I met a guy once who told me this awful story of getting bucked off his mule and breaking his ribs, etc. He never rode again after that. Since then I've been biased against them even though my grandparents were big mule fans.