Fantastic Friday - Horse Quotes IV

More quotes on horses… quite a few by the famous ‘unknown’.

'The Joy of Life' ~ Lucy Kemp-Welch

‘Ask me to show you poetry in motion and I will show you a horse’ ~ Unknown

‘He has galloped through young girls’ dreams, added richness to grown women’s lives and served men in war and strife’ ~ Toni Robinson

‘His is a power enhanced by pride, a courage heightened by challenge. His is a swiftness intensified by strength, a majesty magnified by grace. His is a timeless beauty touched with gentleness, a spirit that calls our hearts to dreams’ ~ Unknown

'Burnt Out Fires' ~ Lucy Kemp-Welch

‘A stubborn horse walks behind you, an impatient horse walks in front of you, but a noble companion walks beside you’ ~ Unknown

‘I heard a neigh. Oh, such a brisk and melodious neigh it was. My very heart leapt with the sound’ ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

'The Horse Fair' ~ Rosa Bonheur (horse market in Paris)

‘Horses change lives. They give our young people confidence and self-esteem. They provide peace and tranquillity to troubled souls. They give us hope’ ~ Toni Robinson

‘A dog may be man’s best friend… but the horse wrote history’ ~ Unknown

'The Custer Fight' ~ Charles Marion Russell (showing Battle of Little Bighorn from the Indian side)

‘One can get in a car and see what man has made. One must get on a horse to see what God has made’ ~ Unknown

‘A true horseman does not look at the horse with his eyes, he looks at his horse with his heart’ ~ Unknown

‘Through the days of love and celebration and joy, and through the dark days of mourning – the faithful horse has been with us always’ ~ Elizabeth Cotton

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Fantastic Friday - Victory for Wild Horses

I may not live in America, I have never seen wild horses in the flesh, but I fully support their right to live free on land they and their ancestors have occupied for decades.

Pryor Mountain mustangs

Pryor Mountain mustangs

I support The Cloud Foundation, a non-profit corporation that was, more or less, started by the cinematographer and writer, Ginger Kathrens. She’d been following the stallion, Cloud, and his herd. As she got to know them, she began to fear for their future, and that of other wild horses.

I began to realise that we were losing America’s wild horses. They are rounded up by the thousands, losing in an instant what they value most – freedom and family. I realised that even Cloud and his family were in danger.” ~ Ginger Kathrens.

Cloud ( pbs.org )

Cloud (pbs.org)

I’ve been following the recent court case against the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), responsible for rounding up and holding wild horses.

The case involved what’s called the Wyoming ‘checkerboard’, which is an area covering acres of unfenced land, which is both private and public. Private land owners, essentially the Rock Springs Grazing Association and other ranchers who use public lands, had requested the BLM remove any wild horses that cross into private property. But the group defending wild horses – The American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign (AWHPC) – claim that the Grazing Association want the land for livestock grazing despite the association having agreed 40 years ago to allow the horses to graze up to a certain number, which means the wild horses are federally protected on public lands. But the Grazing Association say the BLM has failed to keep the numbers low enough and it now wants out of the deal, and it wants the horses gone.

Pryor Mountain mare and foal

Pryor Mountain mare and foal

When hearing of cases like this, it is easy to let cynicism take over and believe that politics and money will outshout any humane voice of reason. Well, colour me awesomely surprised to learn that on Tuesday, October 11th, the US Court of Appeals ruled in favour of the wild horses!!

Here’s part of the press release:

'DENVER, CO (October 11, 2016) . . . Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals Tenth Circuit upheld a lower court’s dismissal of a lawsuit filed by the State of Wyoming against the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) seeking the removal of hundreds of wild horses from public lands across the state. The American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign (AWHPC), The Cloud Foundation, Return to Freedom, and wild horse photographers Carol Walker and Kimerlee Curyl were granted the right to intervene in the case and filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit against the BLM.

At issue in the case, first filed in 2014, were wild horses in the Antelope Hills, Crooks Mountain, Green Mountain, Lost Creek, Stewart Creek, Fifteenmile and Little Colorado Herd Management Areas (HMAs) in Wyoming.

The Tenth Circuit held, “We reject the State’s arguments… the [Wild Horse] Act does not define the phrase “appropriate management level” and thus does not equate it with any requirement to remove excess animals from a particular HMA… the BLM is under no statutory duty to remove animals from the seven HMAs at issue.”'

And the link for the full transcript

Whenever I see Ginger Kathrens and her friends' beautiful pictures take of the wild horses (which can also be found on the Foundation's facebook page), I find myself yearning to be there, in those gorgeous surroundings, just for a chance to see those “freedom loving icons of the West”. (Ginger Kathrens)

Favourites on Friday - Liam's Stable Adventures

I’ve been meaning to do a post about Liam … more of a tribute really, as I am so proud of him.

He was working 3 days a week at the stables, with 2 young … females.  I was going to say ‘ladies’, but as you’ll see, their behaviour was far from ladylike.  To begin with, the 3 of them got on really well, and I was happy that he was making a new set of friends.  They even came to his last band concert in the summer to show their support.  Soon after that, however, for reasons still unknown to Liam, they started to change.

I won’t name names, instead I’ll call them A and G; A is about 21 now, I think, and G is 18, just a couple of months older than Liam.  He didn’t tell me straightaway when things started to go sour.  But I noticed that he was getting less and less enthusiastic about going to work.  He mentioned a few things, usually in the car on the way home, about how annoying he found them.  But he also talked about some funny stuff.  One thing I myself found off-putting was their preferred topic of conversation, which I usually heard snippets of while waiting for Liam to finish – boys (obviously, given their age) and sex.  Lots of sex!  And clubbing, and drinking.  Again, lots of drinking.  Which, at the end of the day, was none of my business.

Then Liam started to tell me more - the scolding (!) for turning up 40 minutes late, with them insisting he had to start work at 08:00, even though Richard (boss) said his work hours were 08:30 – 16:30, because he knew the drive took me about 40 minutes, sometimes longer, depending on the traffic.  They belittled his work, especially around horses, regardless of the number of times he said that, unlike them, he hasn’t had much experience around horses – as far as they were concerned, that was no excuse, he should just know!  They compared him unfavourably to guys they fancied, in front of him … In front of me, however, both A and G behaved ever so sweetly.

For Liam, the worst part was to do with one of the horses he was especially fond of, and she seemed to be quite fond of him too.  He’d spend time with her, and found her presence calming.  She belongs to Richard’s ex-wife (all get on amicably) who would always tell Liam to keep an eye on her horse, and look after her in the lady's absence.  A and G started to ‘forbid’ Liam to go anywhere near the horse, trying to stop him spending time with her … A said if he didn’t listen to her, she would make his life very difficult.  He wanted to know how, but she couldn’t give him an answer so just repeated that she would make his life difficult.

Anyway, the bullying got to the point where he phoned me, which he never does when he’s at work, only ever texts.  He was in tears, and just wanted help to calm down.  He said he’d finish his day at work, and I said I’d get there earlier.  We had a long talk on the way home.  He hadn’t told Richard because he was trying to work it out himself, and he didn’t want me to say anything to them either.  As things were getting worse, he decided he wanted to leave.  And I didn’t talk him out of it.  This was back in September.

I know he could have spoken to Richard about it, but I thought he’d been through enough, so I phoned Richard and explained the situation.  Interestingly, he wasn’t surprised as the girls, especially G, apparently had a bit of a reputation.  Liam, bless him, said he’d work the Friday, and that would be his last day, and Richard was fine with that.  Nothing was said to A and G about Liam leaving, until the end of the day when he said ‘bye, telling them that he was leaving.  Talk about surprised!  They had no idea why, and when he finally told them, they turned it right around, and said he couldn’t take criticism.  At no point did they think they’d anything wrong.

I was particularly angry with them as their behaviour had put Liam off working at stables.  So, after about 2 weeks of Liam wondering what jobs to apply for, he finally realised that he still wanted to work with horses.  We were perusing other stables when, out of the blue, Liam got a call from Richard asking if he’d like to return to the stables, and that both girls had left.  Well … !!

Richard said that after Liam left, A and G knew that Richard was angry with them.  Gradually, the truth leaked out … some of the other girlies who helped at the stables admitted that they’d stopped coming around so much because they didn’t like A and G’s behaviour; people who came for lessons weren’t impressed with them; other people who helped out at the stables or boarded their horses there didn’t really like them either.  So, it looks as if Liam had done Richard a favour.

Liam started back mid-October, and now works with 2 ladies, and he works 5 days – Mon and Thurs mornings, and all day Tues, Wed and Fridays.  And he loves it!  Vicky, who’s there full-time, is wonderful, and so is Hayley, the other lady who only works the mornings.  They’re both in their early 30s, have small children, and are just so very nice.  Liam especially likes Vicky – he says she’s sometimes like a mother-figure, and other times like an older sister.  And she looks out for him, which, of course, I adore her for.  They both know the ‘story’ of why Liam left, and he’s found them supportive.  Especially as he still sees G sometimes; she keeps her horses at the stables over the road from where he works.  But no words have been exchanged.

Without any fuss, Richard has given him more responsibilities.  Vicky and Hayley have school-age kids, and need to get the school run out of the way before work.  So Liam is the first one there, he opens up and is responsible for giving all the horses their breakfast – about 17 of them.  He moves horses between fields on his own – riding bareback and leading 2 or 3.  He does a walk-out with a young, disabled man (with his carers accompanying them).  Goes into a field full of horses to ‘catch’ one ... One time the mist was so heavy, he couldn’t see too far ahead of him, and stood there, unimpressed, as he had to find and get a grey horse!  And there are about 5 or so grey horses in that field!  And yesterday, the horse he had to get was lying, flat out, in the field, enjoying the sun!

I am very proud of my young man.  There was a time he wouldn’t say ‘boo’ to a goose, needed to have either me or Gordon around as moral support.  But the way he’s handled himself … I don’t think I would have handled it as well.  And Gordon – who was all for going to the stables himself and giving A and G a sound telling-off – he’s rather proud of his brother too.

I do believe, where both my wonderful sons are concerned, I have nothing to worry about.