Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Argo’s First Pennsylvania Snow

What is soul? It's like electricity - we don't really know what it is, but it's a force that can light a room. ~Ray Charles

Last Thursday, Western PA residents experienced their first measurable snows fall. I knew that Argo would not be any different, but I did have the thought go through my head that he was probably thinking "Is this it? Heck this is nothing!"

We are under a Winter Storm Warning as I type this. According to the Weather people we are supposed to get anywhere from 3-6 inches by tomorrow night. I have learned not to believe them. They get everyone in a panic. People rush to the store and buy enough goods to feed small armies for 4 months. My family and I lived in Iowa for 5 years, now that area can get some snow. When we moved back here I just shook my head at the lunacy of people racing around like they would never see the light of day until April, over a couple inches of snow.

It was fun to get some pictures of Argo though as the big, fat snowflakes were coming down, while he was patiently waiting for the food lady while she snapped some pictures.

Also, on the news front with Argo. Babe showed him that his shed will not eat him. He has been going in for his evening meal, and based on what I have cleaned up, he is quite comfortable in there for several hours.

In the morning last week, he was still in his shed when I came to feed him, so I quietly shut the gate. It amazed me how stock solid rigid he became. I imagine this was how he was when run into chutes and stocks. He did not move a muscle. I placed his food in, and he relaxed a little. I climbed up the gate as he stood there and for the first time was able to stroke his neck. The feeling was unbelievable. I felt the tears run down my cheeks, I know I get way too emotional when these little breakthroughs happen, but I am still in awe every time they do. To touch something Wild is just a thrill; to feel his muscles loosen under that touch tells me that he is accepting me. It is so amazing to me that a creature that lived his life in the wild for 17 years will stand here quietly in a 10x12 shed and allow this blubbering woman to hang over a gate to stroke his neck. When he exhaled, I hadn't realized I had been holding my breath as well; we both shared the moment and when he looked at me with those eyes I saw an understanding in them. His eyes speak so much to me, ever since I first saw pictures of him. I watch him and I learn from him as I hope he is learning from me.


Linda Reznicek said...

I just went back and read your original posts--wow. I didn't realize you'd adopted a 17 year old stallion/gelding. His winter coat looks identical to Beautiful's color. If he wasn't from Kiger--I'd swear he was her sire. The side profile is similar, too--but then there is some overlap with all of the horses since Kigers came from Beaty's Butte.

I see why they left him in there all those years. He has qualities that would be desirable in the Mustangs--looks like good feet and overall conformation. Gorgeous.

So, I just wonder at the difference gentling or peopling a 17 year old versus a yearling. Beautiful has that same tendency to be very laid back and predictable. She sizes everything and everyone up quietly and calmly. Looks the same for Argo. Maybe it has more to do with temperment than age. Who knows.

I'll be very interested in following your blog.

SkyBar Farm said...

As far as the genteling with Argo, it has been a long process. There is a lot of history there to work through. Everyday though he becomes more comfortable and more trusting. I believe it would be easier with a yearling or 2 year old. Preservation is not ingrained as much as it is in the older ones. I also believe boys are easier than girls no matter what the age. The mares are the front line and alarm system so to speak. They have more preservation instinct in them. I have been trying to get caught up on Beautiful, she is very engaging and such a beauty. Good Luck an thanks for popping in.

Linda Reznicek said...

That's interesting about the boy versus girl thing. I have noticed that many people who blog with the boys seem to make faster progress. Beautiful was very insecure and always went to the corner and pointed her butt at me. Getting her to face up was my biggest issue. She didn't have a mean or aggressive bone in her body, but she did kick a friend of mine when I was out of town--which required a trip to the hospital--she was bruised, but nothing broken. I think my friend had surprised her in the stall. Argo is an old boy--but he sounds gentle natured. Do you have any issues with getting his feet trimmed? That was my big problem because of Beautiful's club foot.