Last week I left fly masks on the horses overnight...the mosquitoes were HORRIBLE. I sprayed the heck out of their bodies to keep the nasty little things away, but you know you just can't do a good job on their faces. So, on go the fly masks.
Come morning, Gabe is minus his mask. Okay. I can deal with that, he's tough on his clothes. So, I search his paddock. No mask. I search Calypso and Chief's paddock, thinking maybe they were playing over the fence and one of them stole his mask. Nope. No mask. I thought, well, maybe his mask is hidden in some of the tall grass in his paddock. So, I mowed. No mask. Huh. What the heck? I mow Calypso and Chief's paddock. Still NO MASK.
Of course I'm wondering if the big pig ate his mask. I even checked in the water tank, under his hay manger and around the outside of his paddock, just in case. Nada.
We have two paddocks and three good-sized pastures. The horses are all locked into their paddocks at night. No one stays out in the pasture overnight. So, I'm out mowing a section of land that hasn't been fenced yet (that's on next year's list of things to get done!) and I glance over into one of our pastures and what do I see there? THE MASK! Ummm...what the heck? How did Gabe's fly mask get off his face, across his paddock, across Calypso and Chief's paddock and on the OTHER SIDE of a 2 acre pasture? It's a mystery to me! I'm going with the theory that the wind blew it there. Which would be a great theory if we had HAD any wind that night. Which we didn't. I wonder if an animal would carry something like that off. I can't imagine it, but you never know.
Second mystery: Last night I went out to the very far pasture to bring Gabe and Calypso in for the night. They come running up to the gate because they love me (read: Feed us NOW!) and I noticed Gabe's face looks odd. Really odd. Like during the day his head went from steel and dark gray to chestnut. How bizarre is that? Great, my gray horse has a weird color gene expressing itself.
Nope. It was RUST all over his face. Rust or something like it. But I can't for the life of me figure out how the heck he got a dusting of this rust-colored stuff all over his face. Aside from the fence posts, there is no metal in the pasture. The water tubs are plastic, the gate is currently electric fencing. There is nothing he could have rubbed his head on to get it covered in this stuff. There aren't even any weeds in that pasture that would have rust-colored pollen. It rubbed off easily enough and seems harmless, but it just has me shaking my head, wondering what this horse managed to get into to leave his face chestnut colored! Weird.
I haven't worked with Gabe for the last couple of days. With the daylight waning so very early I'm only able to work one horse a night. Or give Kayleigh a lunge lesson on Chief. She has been asking more and more often to go riding with me so I do. Soon enough mom won't be cool any more and I'll be riding alone again, so I'll take every bit of riding time with her I can get. We're enjoying it. She's been riding the old man bareback which just thrills the heck out of her.
Gabe's new clothes arrived yesterday. I haven't tried them on him yet, but I must say, these blankets are the BIGGEST horse clothes I've ever owned! Star wore a 76" blanket. Gabe wears an 80". I even measured him twice, just to be sure I wasn't hallucinating!