It was a very quiet morning.
Jane was climbing up the hill to my paddock in the warm rain. We both like this. Rain means fewer people around. No one, in fact.
We walk down to the barn, where Jane hooks me to a cross tie, and throws a fleece over my back to warm me up. Out come the clippers.
I like where this is going. Barber Shop! Chicks find a little stubble attractive. Long whiskers? Not so much.
Between the halter around my neck, the warm fleece blanket, and the wwwwrrrrrr of the clippers, my eyes drooped, and, well, I nodded off. Life is good: a grooming thing I can get into, quiet rain, quiet mom, I just sort of…..ZZZzzzzzzzzz….
I woke up when Jane dusted off my face with a warm towel. Damn. I realize I’ve fallen asleep with my head over her shoulder. I look at Jane. Are you sure you got them all?
“Sorry, buddy”, she says, and lifts my head off, “I did it twice.”
She massages some dude moisturizer into my skin. Some herbal crap. At least it doesn’t smell fruity. Halter goes back on, and she clips one side to the cross tie again.
I notice two things:
- It’s stopped raining. The sun is out. Nice.
- Humans have let the grass destroyers out of their cages, and are letting themselves be dragged toward the barn.
I loathe grass destroyers.
- They destroy the green nectar of life.
- They are obviously horribly dangerous. Humans use metal rods to hold them back. Humans use leashes on tigers. The metal rod can only be present to keep the destroyer from whipping around and tearing the human apart.
They keep these things on the same property as horses. If I can get out, a grass destroyer can get out. Humans are not very bright.
Jane disappeared into the tack room. Really? She’s going to leisurely put a saddle on me while the GD’s close in?
What part of Dodge: Get the HECK Out Of, did she miss in The Pony Club Handbook?
I follow her into the tack room as far as my tether will allow, and knock over the 50 gallon trash can (full of trash) to let her know what a bad idea this is.
“Hudson!”, Jane scolded, frowning. But she stops, and hears the VVvvvvrrrrrr, Vrrrrrr, VRRRRrrrrrrr coming closer.
I back out of the tack room. Mission accomplished. Hellloooooo.
What happened to asking animals questions?
“What is it, Lassie? Where’s Timmy? Oh no! He fell down the old well in the north pasture?!? I’ll get some rope. Go back to Timmy, tell him we’re coming, and to stay calm!”
Jane comes out to check. “Hudson, it’s fine. It’s just…..”
That’s when the shooting started.
POW. Ping ping ping. Kapow. Pow pow pow. Ping. Zing.
pop pop pop pop pop pop pop pop pop pop
I. Freaked. Out.
I’m tied to the wall, in a building currently under heavy fire, and Jane is trying to tell me IT’S ALL RIGHT?
Is she NUTS? Drive. By. Shooting. We are going to DIE.
She proves she is not entirely insane by yanking on the panic snap and releasing me from the wall.
Bullets hit the wall, the roof, the road outside the barn. I was able to keep my freak out in check, only rearing a dozen times or so, spinning, and yanking us off the rubber matting into the cement aisle. I didn’t realize the sparks were from my shoes striking the aisle (thought it was bullets), and I spun some more before throwing all my weight on my haunches, to launch us into a gallop – away from the bullets.
Stay with me, equines: Jane was trying to get me to WALK me away from the gunfire.
I tried to run for our lives. Jane is very difficult to drag, so it was more of a huge trot down the aisle with Jane sort of waterskiing at the end of the lead rope.
We finally hit the indoor arena, where Jane yanked on the panic snap on my lead and let me go. I was flooded, FLOODED with relief. I wasn’t trapped. I could take the fence if need be!
I was completely unprepared for what followed. Jane whirled around and marched straight out into the gunfire.
I like Jane. But that is just…INSANE. I’ll drag her to safety, I’ll gallop her to safety, but put my body between her and bullets? Um, NO. Flight. Animal.
And I thought we lived in a Good Neighborhood.