We both had a very long night last evening. As JW crawled into bed at 10:00 he asked, "What's that noise?" We laid there for a few moments listening to try to understand just what we were hearing. It almost sounded like a very big cat purring but our small cat wasn't even in the room. We even walked through every room to try to find the source of the sound. After several frustrating minutes I remembered that the neighbors hot tub had been making some strange noises so we went out onto the back deck to listen. JW said "That's not where the sound is coming from....it's over there." As I swung the flashlight around to see what was there I saw a horse lying down and we could here the sound of his breathing. And I said "Oh, it's just the neighbors old white horse sleeping." All of their horses often sleep near our side of the fence.
So off to bed we went again, glad to finally be going to sleep. At 2:00 that morning something woke me up. I still don't know what it was. After lying there for several minutes I again realized I could still here what sounded like that horse still breathing very loud. I have had horses for the better part of my life and the feeling occurred to me that horses don't normally lay down that long. I pickup the big flashlight and headed out onto the back deck. As I flashed the light in the horses direction I realized she was still in the same spot and position. I went back in the house and put on my shoes and then I followed the fence line to where the horse was lying, about 30 feet from our deck. To my heart break she had fallen into a irrigation ditch that runs just inside her pasture. Even though it was only about 2 feet deep she had been struggling to get herself out and in the process had ended up on her back with her hoofs just barely touching the top of the ditch bank because of the angle she was in. I know she sensed that I was there to help her as she settled down but you can not imagine how I felt when I realized how long this beautiful horse had been trapped there. If only I had walked out and checked her at 10:00 when we first heard her. I ran back into the house as JW had woken up by then wondering where I was, and called his daughter to get the horse owners phone number. I hate calling anyone in the middle of the night but I knew the horse wouldn't stand a chance by morning in this cold night air. The owner and his wife came immediately and JW's daughter and husband came to help too. We did have to resort to getting the owners 4 wheel drive truck to pull her out of the ditch.
I can happily see this white mare from my front window today. She walks a little stiff and slow, but she looks like she will do alright. Not bad for a 28 year old horse who must certainly have a special horse angel near her side!
This was a view we saw this afternoon on our way into Darby. It seems that we see something new and different every time we travel some where around here!