Monday, April 6, 2009

A Horse's Tale

This is a wild and crazy story, but it also has a sad ending, so if you don't like sad endings, don't read on.

Thursday night we all went to bed, peacefully sleeping away. Suddenly, Dan and I both woke up with a start, and then realized we were hearing the last bit of the doorbell ringing. Jumping out of bed, we look a quick look at the clock. 3:30! As in AM! Who was ringing our doorbell at 3:30 in the morning? Dan quietly made his way along the hall, trying to peek around the corner without the person outside seeing him. I was a safe distance behind and ready to dash back to our room for the phone and call 911. (I know, our phone is cordless, I should have carried it with me.)

At the time I remember thinking, what if this is a trick, like on one of those crime shows? Then I saw Dan flip on the outside light and open the door. As I listened I heard a man's voice say, "Yeah, I've got this injured horse across the street and I wondered if it was yours." What?! At 3:30 in the morning you've "found" an injured horse? What kind of story is this? What I couldn't see, and Dan already knew, is that it was a policeman at our door. After a bit of conversation, yes, the people before us had horses, no, our two neighbors don't have horses either, he left, saying he was going to check down the road. (And probably give more people heart attacks, too!)

It took a while but we finally went back to sleep and when we woke up in the morning, sure enough, there across the street, in an unfenced field belonging to one of our neighbors, was a horse. An injured horse. It happened to be a Friday and a day off for Dan, so he was outside much of the day, getting things done, like planting those apple trees that had arrived during the snowstorm.

All day long, people kept stopping to talk to Dan about the horse. First it was some people in a truck asking whose horse it was and if they could have it. Then the owners of the horse came by and it turned out that a family with 7 kids had moved in on the street south of ours last fall and they had one horse. Somehow the horse had gotten loose and escaped during the night, and broke its leg. This particular house we can see from our house during the winter when the leaves are gone. The poor teen/tween girls of the family were with the horse for a while, comforting him.

A while later, Dan saw the owner come back and then a truck pull up. It was obviously the vet and he had come to put the horse down. Poor horse! So all the rest of the day there was this dead horse laying on the side of the road. In the afternoon, I came out to throw some stuff on the compost pile and as I was headed back to the house, I heard an airplane. It was getting louder and I looked up and there was a little plane not far from us and to me it looked like it was about to crash! I said, "Dan, look, that plane is going to crash!" He said he thought they were just looking at the horse. Then the plane got really low and he thought it might crash too, but it didn't. Weird!

Then, the sheriff stopped by to talk to Dan. Yes, the sheriff! He said he had been getting a lot of calls about a dead horse. Evidently Dan must have been the only person around who was outside, because everyone kept coming to talk to him. So Dan told him the whole story.

As I type this, that dead horse is still out there, on the side of the road. At least someone covered it with a blue tarp, although with the strong winds we have been having, it is only mostly covered. I am not sure what happens to the horse now. Hopefully someone takes it away soon.

At least it is not summertime and HOT. That could have made it very unpleasant around here.

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