I hate to keep banging on about it, but one of the most frustrating aspects of being blind is the amount of time you waist searching around for things that are, or at least should be, right under your nose. This activity is made even more interesting when the thing you are trying to find is on the floor of an enclosed space that also contains a large, over friendly, quadruped, and several samples of said animals excreta. Something I find myself doing 8 times a day, 4 breakfast bowls, and 4 teatime bowls, while the horses are in overnight during winter.
In their natural state, horses graze at ground level, and intermittently browse from shrubs, bushes and trees. They also tend to move, walking slowly, whilst grazing. You can watch them doing this in the field. . It’s not really possible to replicate this behaviour when shut in a 12 X 12 wooden box, but our girls certainly like to try. Which keeps me entertained.
We serve the ‘hard feed’, a feed balancer, and whatever supplements and medication each individual happens to be taking, In shallow, round, rubber trugs. They are reputed to be made out of recycled tyres. I don’t know about that, but they certainly smell foul when they’re new. It always amazes me that a horse doesn’t get put off it’s food by the smell, but I’ve never had any complaints. The Beauty of the trugs is they are both flexible and strong. They can stand up to a lot of punishment, and don’t seem to be bothered by extremes of weather. That said, both Leonie and Breeze hand each killed a trug this winter. Luckily, they’re not too expensive either.
So, picture the scheme. It’s roughly 10.30p.m. Hal and I are checking the girls last thing. Hal is topping up the waters, and I am hanging fresh Haynes, and, theoretically, removing the empty feed trugs. It goes like this;
Open stable door and immediately stand on, or trip over trug – ideal!
Hang haynet, then do a fingertip, or, more correctly, boot tip, search of th stable floor, squelching through pee and poo, and occasionally walking into a horse that keeps moving in order to more easily see the fun, and who is sniggering away whilst saying “Cold – getting warmer – no, getting colder – ooh, red hot!”. Eventually I find it. Either it is;
Exactly where I put it, I’ve just managed to step over it 4 or 5 times,
No longer in the stable as Hal has already moved it,
Directly underneath a now hysterically laughing horse, who has spent the time I’ve been looking for it, very carefully positioning herself so the trug is directly under her central point.
Sometimes, just to add variety, 1 of the girls will land a poo in their trug. Leonie’s speciality is turning it upside down, and then standing on it! Never a dull moment.
Oh well, it keeps me off the streets.