Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Thinking About Tomorrow

And Tomorrow There'll Be Sun

To sing the song from "Annie," of course is optimistic, but it is supposed to warm up tomorrow. The only problem is that it is Ash Wednesday and I need to go to church to sing for the service at night. That leaves me a tight window after I get home from school.

Thinking about tomorrow also brings me to where I was tonight after school--at a retirement party for one of my fellow English teachers who will be leaving this week. I made me put things into perspective enough to get started on filing my papers for my own retirement at the end of the year. I think I am actually going to take the leap and do it. Money will be for the short term just a little tricky, but I'm pretty sure I have it under control.

I have been teaching for 38 years--same school, same job. I think it may well be time to go.

The thought of having all the time I could ever want to do whatever I want is really appealing. And, gee, I might even start writing that book I talked about yesterday.

The Boys are so cute when I come home. I pull into the drive near the paddocks, get out of the car to collect the mail, and sure enough, Chance and Tucker come over to visit. It's just kind of a "Hi!' from them but how nice to be noticed. Of course, it could have something to do with the fact that I feed them as soon as I come home, but I'd like to think they're happy to see me without gastric motivation.

C'mon...I'd like to think it. Don't spoil it for me. *G*

Anyhow, when I go to the barn my first chore is to put hay in the stalls. If I leave the gate that leads into the barn's center aisle open on Toby's stall, he will go into the barn, and come over to the feed room door to "snoopervise" my dishing out the grain. Then he follows me back to his stall while Tucker stands in Chance's stall--across the aisle from his stall--doing his Spanish dance (kind of pawing and stretching with his front legs) until I open both stall gates to let him in his own stall to eat. Chance then moves in to his feed tub and everyone is happy munching away.

It's a cute little routine we all enjoy. The Boys get to express themselves a little and I get that special pleasure of making them happy.

Are there very many sights and sounds better than horses eating their hay and grain? It just makes me feel so good to know they are well fed and content.

It's another one of those things people who don't have horses could never quite understand.

Just the other day at school, I was fretting a bit because I was low on hay and I thought I wasn't going to have time to stock up until the end of the week. (The hay story ran yesterday.) The school nurse made some remark about how I was stressing again and hadn't the same thing happened a few months ago?

Now, the fact is, every time either my hay or grain starts to get low, I start to plan my week to be sure I will be all stocked up before I run out. Several months ago, the feed store I have been using had none of my grain in stock and I could not find out if they had ordered it so I could pick it up on the weekend. I had just enough to last me to the weekend, but not beyond, so I was really worried and started calling feed stores out of my area to check on their stock. A store closer to my friend Stacie had the feed, but that left me trying to figure out how I was going to get there to buy enough to hold me over. Since I made several phone calls from school, the nurse had overheard some of my concerns and tried to offer some helpful suggestions.

But it's back to the non-horseman in the mix again. There was just no way she could ever quite understand the enormity of the crisis--running out of feed--nor why I was starting to panic about just how to solve the problem. Fortunately, my friend Stacie is a horseman, and since she was coming up to ride Toby that weekend, she solved the issue by stopping by the store for me and picking up some bags of the feed I needed. Then, my feed store came through and I managed to stock up....until the next time. *sigh*

Years and years ago, when I had Russell R. boarded at a private place run by non-horsemen, I arrived just in time to find the son trudging to the barn with a basket of sweet corn to feed the horses. They had run out of proper grain and he was going to subsitute. Sweet corn???? My arrival was a lucky stroke for sure. I stopped him, used some grain I had stored in my horse trailer for traveling and probably saved us all from colic.

Ah, the good old days. More topics to explain to those who just don't "know" horses.

You have to admit, ours is a curious world. And to think, after at least 45 years of working with horses I still have so much to learn.


  1. It's a good feeling to hear them munching their hay and grain, I especially like when they slurp up their beet pulp.
    As for non-horse people they just don't understand if a horse isn't fed properly there could be problems. Corn? Hmm.
    If you do retire you will have lots of time to do what you want. I'm sure you know the decision that's right for you. Good luck in whatever you decide.

  2. Anonymous9:07 PM

    I love the sound of horses quietly eating - I think we should make a relaxation tape for horse people with sounds of horses eating!

    I retired in 2000 and have been exploring ever since - good luck with what you choose.

  3. you will save money on fuel for the car and clothes for work, and will have time to write that and other books, to do more horsey things, and perhaps pursue a new career...

    and no, people who don't have horses don't understand the need ....not so bad when teh feed store don't keep office hours (as some do!) but always a worry. we're lucky, there's about 4 within 7 miles of here...