Saturday, January 11, 2014

Random thoughts

Joseph loves rose hips
We were discussing tattoos today.  Sometimes I think it might be fun to get a tattoo, but I've never been able to think of what it would be.  John said he was surprised I didn't get a tattoo of Tonka's brand.  A lot of people do.  But to me, as much as I love to see a branded mustang, and I think it's a mark of distinction in some ways, I also think it's a mark of oppression.  Branding myself with the mark of ownership by the US government isn't really something I think I would do. I guess I'm torn.  Because, by being taken in by the US government, the horses are saved, and some go on to have meaningful lives.  Before we had this system, the horses were junk, rounded up brutally and canned.  So the brand is a symbol of hope, in that way.  I think my problem has been with the first symbol in the brand, the sign of  US ownership.  I didn't want to mark myself with a sign of ownership.  But now that I think about it, it was the PEOPLE of our country who passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro act of 1971.  And that symbol is the mark of people who care, placed on the horse to protect it.  Wow, I just turned my opinion around on that one.  Thanks for listening to my babbling as I thought that through.  (Which isn't to say I've decided to get a tattoo.)

In other thoughts, recently Liam was holding Bella and tried to move out into a different area of the pasture to get away from Scout and Joseph.  Scout was tearing around, thinking we were taking his mama away, and Joseph was slowly and deliberately trying not to be caught.  Bella is their lodestone, she is the center of their lives, so of course Liam couldn't get out of the middle of it.  I explained to him that they both wanted to be with her, and he thought it was because she was the herd boss.  I said no, Joseph is the herd boss.  He can move any of them off their feed with just a dirty look.  But Bella is the one they love, so if she moves away, they follow.  I told him to think about that.  It's not the tough one, possibly a bully (although Joseph is decidedly NOT a bully) who brings them together, it's the loving one.  And Bella is definitely the loving mother type, but she also doesn't take crap off of anyone.  She does pick her battles though. She shares feed with anyone but the donkeys, she puts up with Scout doing some dorky crap, she adores Joseph but she doesn't let him take liberties.  Food for thought, and I am definitely not the first person to observe it.  Mark Rashid writes more clearly and specifically about it than I have here.

Having a magnet like Bella can definitely work to a person's advantage.  When Joseph is being evasive, I know he won't go far before he curves back toward her, so I use that, asking him to move his feet away, until (usually after about 30 seconds) he decides it's not worth it and comes to me.  If all three of them are keyed up and running, I know that once I catch Bella the rest will come after.  And she is usually quite easy to catch, all I have to do is ask her to come.

The donkeys don't really fit into horsey psychology.  They just love everyone.  Especially people, and especially if they can get a good scratching or, best of all, a treat. 

As I use the word "love" so much, I am thinking to myself there are a lot of people out there, including some horse lovers, who would say horses (and donkeys) can't love.  I totally disagree.  But that's okay.  They probably do witness the same emotion in them that I do, and call it by another name.  Habit, or attachment, or something of the sort.  I suppose it would make it easier to detach oneself from them, to buy and sell and separate, as if the horses don't care.  I'm not saying a person shouldn't buy or sell horses, I know they do adapt & form new bonds, but I think they do have feelings about it too.

Enough of all that. I'm going to go enjoy my day of enforced insideness (howling winds and deluge out there) by cleaning tack and getting my house more livable.  Have a lovely weekend!


Ranch Girl Diaries said...

Great pay Andrea. I agree about brands tattoos-kinda cool but weird. would rather get a ring or bracelet stamped or something. I got a tattoo in my mid-twenties. Don't regret it but I would get something different now. It's not in a visable area unless I'm swimming. :)

Ranch Girl Diaries said...

Great post, not pay. silly phone!

Andrea -Mustang Saga said...

I thought that might be an auto correct typo. :)

I have his brand on a ring from "Get Nailed." I love it. It's the only piece of jewelry other than my wedding ring that I wear all the time. I feel naked without it.

Kara said...

I agree about horses "loving" their herdmates. Cody and Chico have that relationship with eachother. When Cody was away for training for 2 months, the whole first week, he waited by the gate and hardly spent any time out with the others grazing. My main 3 have been together since the mustangs were yearlings and Cody was 2. I can't imagine separating them. I know they would be just fine as long as they had another herd, but I also know that they would truly miss one another.

Kara said...

PS, you can make wine out of rose hips!

Lea and her Mustangs said...

I agree that horses other animals too but I am talking about horses love us. When Sage was in Oregon and I went down to visit, she was glad to see me and she nuzzled me and was glad to have me there and was sad when I left her.

Cindy D. said...

Aren't herd dynamics fascinating?

I have a tattoo also, it is special to me even though it is in a place that most people don't see unless I'm wearing a tank top or cami. I am glad I got it, but I wish the person who did it had done a better job.

I think that horses do love, and the definitely form strong bonds with other horses. Poor Trax is still very lonely without Danny. They were best buds.