It's been said that we all can imagine our own version of hell and let me tell you, I know what mine is: All wind, all the time.
This recent spate of hurricane force winds began late Christmas Eve. Ron and I had just come home after taking my parents and my sister on a tour of the festive light displays when I heard a sound much like a freight train. The house rattled. The windows shook. The metal hinges on our front gate groaned. It was the wind. I spent much of the night trying to console my poor horses who looked at me as if I was somehow responsible for the weather. Who could blame them for spooking and snorting? When they weren't jumping and whirling, they stood motionless, an expression of resignation on their faces. They were heavily blanketed, and had shelter. But they were miserable nonetheless.
After living in this area for nearly 30 years, I know that when the Los Angeles news stations issue wind velocity warnings, I have to add at least 20 miles per hour to the estimate. When the winds are blowing at 40 mph, I don't ride. When they hit 50 mph I switch from feeding hay to feeding pellets. Hay just gets blown into the neighbor's yard. When the gusts top 80 mph-- and trust me, they do-- I apologize to Wally and Lexi, try to appease them with carrots and horse cookies, and make sure that nothing can possibly blow into their paddocks and injure them.
So much for the post-holiday spirit. Hopefully 2008 will be much more heavenly.