On the way home from an appointment in Cordova yesterday, I drove past the back paddocks of Shelby Park Farms. They were filled with the most beautiful horses. It was a real community of horses with family groups and ponies—not the usual clutch of shell-shocked animals standing alone with only flies for company. The color spectrum was fantastic: black walnut, roasted chestnut, fudge brownie, sweet caramel, buttercream, and champagne. Some were solid shades others had swirls, patches, spots, and dappling.
The ponies and adolescents nipped and played with each other in the recent patches of mud, splashing each other in the aftermath of the spontaneous spring storm. The light breeze danced in their hair as they trotted passed small groups of adults nibbling on sweet grasses.
I haven’t seen so many horses in one place in more than ten years. I pulled into the park with the zeal only nature stirs in me. I got out of the car with a bag of the Ambrosia apples, my absolute favorite apple.
The Ambrosia is a natural hybrid born in an orchard in British Columbia.
They were on sale for $1.99 a pound, so I bought four. But I couldn’t keep them to myself. I put them on the ground and sliced them into chunks with the windshield scraper in my car.
Standing at the barbed-wire fence feeding the horses all my cares fell away: the headaches, financial pressures, writing insecurities, all of it. Gone. Some of them ate more than others. There was plenty of nipping and horsey side-eye. Horses aren’t very big on sharing—or waiting.
It reminded me of grocery shopping when my family lived in Midland, Texas. Back then, I’d go to the store and return about three hours later. I would legit spend two hours in the grocery store, but that last hour I’d spend at the fences feeding the neighbors horses the carrots or apples I’d bought just for them. My family could never understand what took me so long. Not sure if I ever told them, but I was feeding the horses. I only managed a few shots. The last one is my favorite. Pictures!