Reno the Keiger mustang toughs out the fire! “Hey- I’m ok, are you??”
July already. And baby, it’s hot! – today the car thermometer said 106. This kind of hot is perfect for swimming in the lake or the river, driving with all the windows down and the hot breeze whipping your hair; shades, shorts and flip flops; laughs and music and beers in the shade of the patio as the day gives way to dark, the inevitable barbeques; a sweaty, slather-on-the-sunscreen horseback ride along the lake. I know I say it every year, but I love summer! I feel more myself without heavy boots, seven layers of clothing and frozen toes. I love the long days and the Yoo-Hoo bottle rolling on the floorboards.
Of course, summer equals fire season, and just a week after Rosie, Captain Call and Reno, plus the two roosters and six red hens moved to the Lane Ranch – fire!
Why is it, just when you think you finally have stuff all dialed in, chaos ensues? I had mistakenly assumed that by moving away from my on-the-edge, off-the-grid, challenging. exciting and dangerous mountain lifestyle, that Life would become more… well, normal? I suppose the answer to that is no matter where you go stuff happens. I heard about the fire on the radio – thanks, Scott, you radio legend – and the good part was I could get there so quickly.
The Cove Fire started at the lakeshore just one hill from the ranch and by the time I got there it was burning through. The wind was fierce, blasting sand and ash and spreading nasty little spotting fires everywhere. A bunch of volunteers and Nadia and Joe had to move all the horses into the safety of the arena from the back pastures as the fire began to burn the fences. That was somewhat hectic! – but afterwards we could only marvel how the fire burned right around the perimeter of the ranch but nothing was burned up except the pasture fences and some fence panels, and all horses were okay except one minor injury when a ranch horse (not even a mustang) ran into a post – and he’s healing fine now.
So the Lanes could really use any donations of cash or materials to replace the pasture fences… railroad ties, no-climb wire, panels… http://www.hswhs.org
Then, a week ago, another surprise. This one a lot happier, though. A mare that had been returned to the ranch from training suddenly dropped a perfect filly. It was like the horse version of an episode from “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant”.
Even with all this I have been riding Reno, the Keiger mustang ,quite a lot. The other day we rode with Nadia on Chaparro across the burned pasture to the lake, past the ranch and up and around. It was like crossing a moonscape. Hot and a little creepy, almost. Reno is taking stuff in stride: rabbits bursting out from underfoot, a scary gate with horse figures, dogs, sprinklers. We had a little rodeo the other day, but I stuck on, and he settled, and I walked him a little then rode home. Only one bruise! But it is a good one. Next I want to take him for a good gallop, then into the lake, and explore that big hill… and go to Rabbit Island…
I realized that having adventures on a mustang was something I forgot to add to the Bucket List. First I thought I would have those adventures with Jackson, the first mustang I adopted. Then it would be Captain Call, who is great but grew too damn huge. Now there is this horse, Reno, who seems to want to go places with me. And how lucky am I to be able to ride, and in this cool place, on this beautiful little mustang?
Meanwhile, I am still looking for my Town home. Will it be the place on the lake with five acres, just minutes from work? Or the place on the creek, up the canyon, just a few minutes from the BF’s? Or someplace I haven’t conjured up yet? I have a hard time making big decisions, yet I know if I am too passive, something will be decided for me!
Maybe I’ll post photos on my FB and let all my friends vote… LOL!
Happy Fourth, and enjoy your Summer!
The Mountain Mouth
“The Mountain Mouth” copyright 2011 Kate MacDonald
*The content of this column and the opinions herein are the sole issue of the author and intended as entertainment only. The Fence Post, its affiliates and assigns, the Rankin Ranch, the Lane Ranch, the makers of sunglasses, patios, flip-flops, beer, and the inventors of the modern barbeque; as well as the author, her relatives, friends, and contributors, and all other humans no matter who they are will not be responsible for any use or misuse of any of the information or opinions contained herein. Always consult a doctor before adopting any new diet or exercise program don’t forget the sunscreen. You too, Bucketmouth.