Lazy afternoon

The morning’s showers have drifted away and the afternoon is warm. The grass dries off quickly and my mares go down for a snooze. Carefully Cassie goes through her knees to ease herself down, folding her legs as she finds a comfortable position. Minnie remains standing for a few moments, then she lies down too. I walk towards them. Ears prick in my direction, but they are comfortable in my presence and they don’t stir. I sit down beside them.

They look so vulnerable with their front legs curled up under their chests and their hind legs stretched out beside their bodies. I find it very moving. My mares exude an air of dreamy contentment. Their eyes are half closed as they drift in between sleep and wakefulness. I inhale the smell of damp earth and listen to the humming of a nearby bumblebee. It is very peaceful. I lie down and slowly reach out so I can stroke Minnie’s leg. Minnie breathes on my hand. Then she stretches herself out in the grass.

Cassie follows Minnie’s example. They are flat-out, their legs extended and their bellies rising up like two enormous mounts. Cassie sleeps calmly, her breathing deep and regular, but Minnie is having a vivid dream. Her legs kick and mow in the air as if she’s galloping, her ears twitch and she is as vocal asleep as she is when she’s awake; she groans continuously. Then, dream over, she sighs deeply and settles her head. Ah bliss.

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10 thoughts on “Lazy afternoon

  1. I must say, this was very nearly a lethal post. The brevity of it, the truth of it, the just very peacefulness of it, all combined to inject a near-toxic dose of envy into my heart. Oh well, at least someone is having your life, namely you. How lovely. Such lucky, lucky horses.

    • Muddy, I have a real talent for making the wrong decisions, but buying this piece of land was the best decision I ever made. Especially because without this land I couldn’t afford to have horses at all anymore. I feel very privileged to be able to live like this with my mares.

      (There are drawbacks to living on top of this hill, we have absolutely terrible internet connection!)

  2. Totally bliss.

    Do they often both lie down flat like that, without one of them keeping watch, or was it because you were there that they felt comfortable?

    It is so sweet and moving to see their wee legs curled up under them, isn’t it?

  3. I really enjoyed this entry, too. Once when my mare was near her due date, I got out to the barn and saw her down in the field, sprawled out exactly like one of your crew here. I immediately went out to check on her. She was COMPLETELY out–mouth hanging open, tongue lolling, eyes rolled up in her head, and she didn’t bat an eyelash when I called her name and whistled. I was in full-out panic mode by the time I got up to her head because she was so unresponsive. I was sure she was dying–never seen a horse that zonked before (although I well remember what it’s like to be pregnant and totally exhausted).

    The degree of trust and understanding–and acceptance–it takes for your horses to relax like that around a human being is truly an honor to experience. I agree with you about how moving it is to see them like that…and am I the only one who immediately thinks of beached whales when they’re stretched out like that on their sides…:) ?

    • Fetlock, welcome to my blog! I always used to describe myself as a beached whale when I was pregnant, but yes, horses stretched out on their side fit the description too!

  4. Awww – the month of this post, June 2011, my husband and I, and our 4 dogs finally moved onto our 20 acre, country property. We have a 3 stall stable, and a beatiful set-up where I am mentally designing a track sytem for my horses. I should mention that I don’t actually have horses, but the dream is unfolding a piece at a time, and it started with our move last June.

    Your post above will become part of my vision, to push through with this biggest dream, that I have been dreaming for so long … and I see myself lieing as you did with my very own beautiful horses …

  5. p.s. we have terrible internet connection too, and I have to stand outside on the front walk to talk on my blackberry – but then who needs their blackberry, when they are in Heaven! 🙂

  6. Christine, it is wonderful that you can take the time to build your life on your dream property. I often view our windy hill top as a peaceful island in a stormy sea.

    I used to have a fancy mobile phone, but not anymore; it has to withstand getting wet, falling in the mud or on rocks and it has to be easy to operate, so I now have a rugged phone that even survives accidently being driven over by a jeep!

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