Since the young horse, my dear Annie, was lost to me, I have been looking for another horse. It has been an ordeal. The first horse I considered buying was a beautiful palomino with a blemished ear. There was no spark of recognition between that horse and me, so I did not get her. A year later, I looked at her half-brother who was even more beautiful. I decided against him because his hooves had horizontal splits in them, either through neglect or disease or both. After a long winter, I reconsidered but by then the owner did not want to sell.
I have talked to several horse rescues too, and I wonder how they ever manage to rescue any horse as they are full of changing schedules, no shows, failure to return calls, and all manner of et cetera and et cetera. Some of the horse rescues have such restrictive rules that it is a wonder they ever manage to place a horse. I understand wanting to forever protect the horses from the same horrendous abuse and neglect they've suffered, but a good dose of common sense would help those rescue people out, and the horses, too.
Then the palomino brood mare that seemed to be such a sure thing last winter was lost when someone arrived at the holding pen and took possession of all the horses. The sheriff in Osage County would not reveal the man's name who took those horses. Many people fear that after being rescued from starvation, finally taken away from their owner by the courts, those horses ended up at slaughter anyway. I sincerely hope not but when the sheriff is not willing to identify the new owner to anyone, it casts a long, dark shadow of doubt.
After that, there was the spirited bay horse that turned out to be far too high-powered and valuable. He had a tangibly sweet spirit and I would have taken him but a more knowledgeable person identified him as a tremendously valuable sport horse. He had been judged by a male trainer as a "crazy horse that was going to kill someone" but none of the women who had dealings with that horse felt he was crazy or dangerous. He went to a woman trainer and then was sold to an experienced woman rider. I have not heard of anyone being killed by that "crazy horse" yet.
Next came the black paint mare with a white valentine on her face. I thought that was a sure deal. I liked her a lot. She turned out to be even more stubborn, uncooperative and difficult than my horse Ginger. Which is not saying that much, really, but the black mare was going to require a lot of work on ground manners and standing for the farrier and such. So rather by general consensus, that horse became a no-go, after three months of patient waiting.
I most recently talked to another woman with two horses needing homes. One was a quarter/draft cross mare. The owner thought she would not be a good fit for what I am wanting. The other horse, a pony, found a new home while I was exchanging emails. In desperation, I called a woman with miniature horses for sale. I was sorely tempted because this would be the chance to accomplish the lifelong dream of bringing a horse into the house - just once! I could at last appease the four-year-old in me that once ferociously dreamed of bringing Cricket, the dear old broke-down cowpony my Grandpa sent to my parent's farm for me to ride. Or, more appropriately, for me to sit on since the poor old thing, after a lifetime of hard work, refused to do anything but patiently stand in one spot. I loved that horse so dearly that I wanted to bring her into the house so she could be warm in the winter. I wanted to go to sleep at night hearing her comforting breathing next to me and wake up to see that dear old face first thing. My parents were not willing to indulge me to that extent, amazingly enough.
But all of this disappointment and worry may pay off today. At 10:30 I am going to take a look at a handsome gray Arab gelding. His owner wants him to go to a good home where he will be well-cared for and loved, petted, and looked after. I think Ginger will adore a male companion. I hope this is the end of the long quest to find a companion for Ginger, and to put another horse into my pasture. It is so much fun to stand at the barn calling horses. They come running, manes flying, racing to see who will get to the barn first for a peppermint, or a carrot, or maybe just scratch behind the ears. Most always they get a treat so they will come when called. Sometimes Ginger refuses to answer the call - it just depends on how she feels. But, if it is possible that another horse might get a peppermint, Ginger races to the barn, too.
I hope the long wait is over at last. I will keep you posted.