Trudy Andrew | Canadian Author

Horse Tails

Jumping Jim

Since Jim has let go of most of his wary angst, he’s behaving more and more, like a normal horse. With the passing of time, his personality is beginning to show, complete with little, amusing quirks. He showed me a display of the horse he is today, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Every morning, I head out with a ration of senior feed for Aurora and Jim to share. The second the door closes, a chorus of whinnies meets my ears. This never changes. Even the horses with access to hay twenty-four hours a day, holler as if they’re starving, Jim and Aurora among them. It doesn’t matter how gently I close the door, how quietly I attempt to walk, they hear. Before the snow fell, I had half a chance at remaining undetected for a little while. Not so any longer. Now each crunchy step, alerts the eagerly waiting mob, to my imminent appearance. Besides the senior feed Jim and Aurora greatly anticipate, I have enough carrot chunks to dole out one per horse.
This particular morning, I was walking by myself. Sweetpea had gone to open the back gate, as we had a load of bales coming. Of all the mornings, she should’ve been walking along with me, toboggan laden with buckets of water, it should’ve been this one. Though I was actually early, Jim was so excited, he couldn’t contain himself. He did something we hadn’t seen before, he played. He actually played. Bogging his head down, he squeaked out a little squeal and gave a jump, then a spin and jump. With that simple action of pure exuberance, he said he felt good, better than good, he clearly felt great.
His enthusiasm didn’t end there. Meeting me at the gate, he expectantly stood beside Aurora. We’ve noticed that he can tell who is who, by the way we walk. Mine has a distinct sound, because I’m gimpy. Sweetpea’s walk includes the sound of snow pants. Jim will neigh to whoever has what he wants, the girlchild for water, me for senior feed. So, before I even got to the gate, Jim knew who was entering their space. Unlike usual, he didn’t move out of the way as I entered. Aurora never does. Instead, she tries her best yoga neck moves, to reach the bucket of feed. Placing a hand against Jim’s neck, I encouraged him to give me some space. When he barely responded, I put a finger to his chest, and asked him to back up. Then it happened. Without warning, he leapt into the air in a crowhop and did a half turn!
Not long after Jim joined our motley crew, I had to give him my distinctive, deep AH. That sound means business, and all the horses instantly know that a boundary has been overstepped. When Jim likely would have kept on messing around and possibly kicking up his heels, he stopped instead. He was clearly still sassy, yet understood that I didn’t appreciate such nonsense when I was right beside him. Off he trotted, only to circle back to where I was pouring the feed into the tub.
My only wish was that sweetpea had seen. Jim had his first display of equine exuberance, and she’d missed it.

Leave a Reply

About Trudy Andrew

Trudy Andrew lives on a small farm just east of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she enjoys her Morgan horses. A dreamer since she was a child, its no surprise to those who know her well that her imagination would find an outlet in writing, as it has in the past through artwork.
All rights reserved. No part of this website or book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means – graphic, electronic or mechanical – without the prior written permission of the author.


 Oakbank, MB