Sunday, October 21, 2007

The wind began last night. Or I guess it was very early this morning. It all depends on your perspective but I was sound asleep at 1:30 am when the first wave of gusts hit so I'm going to refer to it as "last night."

The winds we get in our part of Southern California are pretty astonishing. Big tractor-trailer rigs flip over like pancakes on the nearby freeway. Huge pepper trees snap like uncooked spaghetti. And our endless drought conditions leave the hillsides ripe for disaster, making any whiff of smoke a cause for alarm. The horses out here don't care for the windy weather, either. But after they've lived in this region for a while, they get used to it. They adapt and learn to persevere.

Fortunately, mine are pretty well sheltered in their covered paddocks. Nonetheless, once my husband and I were awake-- and I mean wide awake-- at 1:30 am, it became my duty to venture outside repeatedly and make sure my horses hadn't pulled a Wizard of Oz and blown away.

"I think you'd better go outside ever so often and check on Lexi and Wally," Ron said.

"Uhm, check on them and do precisely what?" I wondered.

"Well, if they're really upset from the wind, I guess we could put them inside the garage," he replied.

Oh, now wouldn't that be special, my horses weathering the wind storm inside the garage! We could turn on the radio, open up the little fridge we keep out there and let them snack on 7-Up and oatmeal cookies. When they got tired, they could hunker down on that old army cot. Or maybe Wally the Wonder Paint would like to open up the tool chest and do some woodworking while Lexi caught up on her reading, browsing through our stack of dusty National Geographic magazines.

Needless to say, the horses stayed put. Thus far the roofs atop their shelters have as well.

So for all of you in other parts of the country who envy our generally mild winters, take solace in knowing that we don't always have horseback riding weather all of the time. During wind storms like this, we just adapt. And persevere.

Have you and your horses endured some incredible weather? Please share. I'd love to commiserate! Just click on "comments" below or email me at:


Anonymous said...

Cindy, you're not alone. I live in Great Falls, MT. Actually, I live on a giant 'hill' just outside of city limits. Up there, it is WINDY!!! Thank GOD for the indoor arena! however, it's been more than once that I've taken a stumble because something, (including the port-a-potty) has rammed against the arena side and spooked an already hyper horse into a pro-rodeo bronco! Still, I'm lucky to have an indoor.

P.S. Love your stories in HI!

Cindy Hale said...

Tara, you top me with your windy day story. I've nearly taken a tumble due to flying newspaper, tumbling tumbleweeds and rattling trashcans. But a wayward port-o-potty???? Now THAT'S a story! Thank you for sharing. I needed a laugh.