Saturday, April 30, 2016

Boulder, Colorado Spring Photos

Moonset over the Flatirons

Two mule deer near Nederland

Yesterday's snow on lilacs

Andrews Arboretum  

Mountain goats in RMNP

Tulips on the Pearl Street Mall

Mountain bluebird in yesterday's snow

Kentucky Derby Is One Week Away!

Well, with the Kentucky Derby one week away, there are other interesting happenings in the world of thoroughbred racing, also....   Today, in South Africa, Abashiri became the winner of the South African Triple Crown, with his win the the South African Derby.  The handsome bay gelding is by American-bred Go Deputy, and out of Donya by Elliodor.  Abashiri had won the first two legs of the Triple Crown, being the Gauteng Guineas and the South African Classic.
  Flamboyant Frankie Dettorri rode Galileo Gold, a son of Paco Boy, to the winner's circle at Newmarket in the first Grade I of the season in Great Britain, the 2000 Guineas.  The betting favorite for the Guineas was Air Force Blue, who finished twelfth of thirteen.  Massaat followed Galileo Gold, with Ribchester in third.  Two American-breds, Air Vice Marshal and Kentuckyconnection ended up in fourth and fifth place.
  It seems that the 2016 Kentucky Derby will have a full starting gate of 20 contenders again this year.  After the withdrawal of Cupid, due to a breathing problem, trainer Bob Baffert has only one entry in the Derby, Mor Spirit.  Pedigree analyzers are commenting on the fact there are three entrants each for two stallions in the top 20 entries: Tapit, the grey son of Pulpit, is standing his twelfth season at stud; while Uncle Mo has only two crops of offspring on the track.  The unsung son of Indian Charlie is siring a lot of good horses early in his career.  Tapit's sons in the Kentucky Derby are: Creator, Lani, and Mohaymen. Uncle Mo's sons are Nyquist, Outwork, and Mo Tom.
   You can be sure I'll be writing about the Derby during this week.  In the meantime, here is a list of the top 25 qualifiers for running in the Kentucky Derby.  They are listed by the number of points earned; please take notice that numbers 18 and 19 are actually tied in their point numbers.
1.    Gun Runner
2.    Nyquist
3.    Exaggerator
4.    Outwork
5.    Brody's Cause
6.    Creator
7.    Lani
8.    Mor Spirit
9.    Mohaymen
10.  Danzing Candy
11.  Destin
12.  Suddenbreakingnews
13.  Oscar Nominated
14.  Shagaf
15.  Whitmore
16.  Tom's Ready
17.  My Man Sam
18.  Majesto
19.  Trojan Nation
20.  Mo Tom
21.  Fellowship
22.  Adventist
23.  Laoban
24.  Dazzling Gem
25.  Uncle Lino
     I have listed the top 25 point earners while there are only 20 starting gate spaces.  If you've ever loved, owned, or spent time around horses and/or ponies, you know that strange things can occur.  In the case of these thoroughbreds, a fever, a swelling, a bad step, colic, even a spider bite, can wipe out that horse's one and only chance to be a Kentucky Derby contender.  I do not want to cause bad luck to any horse, rider, trainer, jockey, stable, barn or owner by pointing these possibilities out to the racing public.  I hope that the top twenty horses are all fine and fit, and race well on Derby Day - with no injuries to anyone (equine or human).

Friday, April 29, 2016

Spring in Colorado - Photos

Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park

Boulder's Flatirons

Near Marble

You never know who, or what, is climbing the stairs in Manitou Springs

Sunset over Pikes Peak

Spring in Boulder, Colorado

We're two days away from May, and it's snowing.  Of course, we had small flurries multiple times yesterday, but the forecasters are now saying we'll have a six-inch accumulation by supper tonight.  Besides distemper outbreaks in our local raccoon population, spring also brings thunder snow and lightning.  Late Monday night and/or early Tuesday morning, we had one heck of a rain, hail, and thunder and lightning event.  I thought we were having a downpour of rain, until I looked out the window and saw hail bouncing off the neighbors' roof.  There was one very loud roll of thunder in the middle of the event.  Lightning struck an ash tree six blocks from the house, and blew most of the bark off the tree.

This time of year also means that Boulder starts to see ravenous bears that have just emerged from hibernation.  The first black bear sighting in Boulder happened yesterday, when a youngster was spotted in a yard near Broadway in South Boulder.  It had apparently eaten plenty during the night, and sought refuge in a neighborhood tree for a twelve hour nap.  It left about dusk, after being filmed by all the local television stations and by hundreds of curious adults and children.  (Hey, there's been a bear sighting! Let's go look!)
This photo was released by the Boulder Police Department, who were asking that citizens stay away and give the bear plenty of room....  Did they?  Of course not!

   I did have to laugh at myself last night.  Joel was on-stage, and I was staying with Rosie.  It was 8 p.m., full dark, and with light sleet falling.  Rosie suddenly lifted her head and looked toward the back yard.  I could see what looked like a flashlight beam inside the shed, as the door was, oddly, open.  My first thought was what is a bear doing in the shed?  My second  thought was why the heck would a bear have a flashlight?  My third thought was that the light was at a very high angle...  It finally hit me that Mark, the gardener, had returned after dark to cover the new flowers and tender plants to protect them from the snow.  The "flashlight" was a head-lamp, and Mark was getting wire forms and protective sheets out of the shed.   -  I was mean, I guess.  -  I walked up behind him in the dark, and said, "Mark! This is unexpected!"  He almost went through the roof, he jumped so high.  Then I felt guilty for frightening him.  So I stayed out and helped him cover the plants....   

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

An English Spring - Photos

Hadrian's Wall

Leeds Castle


Wallsall, West Midlands

Spring reeds

A Cornwall beach

Sunset in the Peak District National Park

Canine Distemper and Raccoons

I had my own close encounter with a very sick raccoon this morning and early afternoon.  I have seen several dead in driveways and along the side of the road.  These are not victims of a car or truck accident - they just look all curled up and not very happy.  In the past week I've passed by 16 dead raccoons in this neighborhood.
   Rosie and I went out early this morning and she relieved herself.  When we went out again, at 8 a.m., she was very interested in the deck, where it overhangs the water feature.  I stooped over, and I saw a raccoon's hind foot being pulled up into the opening.  I hoped the raccoon wouldn't die under the deck and next to the hot tub.
   I took Rosie out at 9:30 and a few minutes after 11.  On the last trip out, I saw the raccoon was on the grass beside the deck, and it was convulsing.  I quickly got Rosie back inside, keeping my body between her and the sight and scent of the raccoon.  First, I called the City of Boulder Animal Control; then I called the owners; then I called the veterinarians.  I spent the next 45 minutes discussing and asking questions about canine distemper...
   First, Animal Control was on another call - which didn't matter to me.  They arrived 45 minutes after my initial call to dispatch.  The young officer looked at the raccoon, and stated that it positively was a case of distemper.  The raccoon wasn't yet dead, and he asked if he could euthanize the animal in the back yard, where it was lying.  I asked to to put the poor creature out of it's misery as soon as possible.  He went back to his truck, filled a syringe with a potent anesthetic, and came back with a syringe poke stick, a set of tongs, and a large blue plastic bag.  Standing on the deck, he was able to inject the raccoon.  Waiting for two minutes after the raccoon ceased the breathe, he picked it up with the tongs, and placed it into the bag, tying it closed.  He took the body away, and cleaned the tongs, the poke stick, and his hands with a sanitizer, and then with a bleach wipe.

   After speaking with the Animal Control Officer, as well as the vets, I learned that raccoons carry both canine and feline distemper within their systems at all times.
   Feline distemper usually causes diarrhea and death in the raccoons.
   Canine distemper will cause diarrhea, followed by seizures and convulsions, then death.
   Sunshine and heat will cause the distemper virus to dry and die quickly.  If this had been mid-summer, I would not have had to do anything other than keep Rosie away from the area for 3 to 4 hours.   Since we are having a cool and rainy spell, I was advised to make a solution of water and bleach - 1 part bleach to 30 parts water - and spray the area, where the raccoon had spent it's last hour, very well.  I was told that once the area was dry, it would be safe.  (Of course, I'm a worry-wart and sprayed all the areas where I had seen the raccoon touching the ground, and where it had climbed under the deck - )

   I hope that none of you have to share the experience.

  The Animal Control Officer told me that we have large peaks of distemper deaths in raccoons every 3 to five years.....

  Have a happy Spring!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Assateague Island Photos

Stretching piping plover chick

Maryland stallion chasing a mare

Assateague mushrooms

An Earth Day request

Assateague raccoon

Assateague Sika deer

Northern Assateague, looking toward Ocean City


Each and every village, town, city, county, state, province and country wants to paint itself as having no prejudice when it comes to drawing tourists and the money generated by tourism.  That needs to be worked on - a lot - in Colorado.  My parents did their best to raise me as a person with no taught prejudice.  Dad turned down the offer of becoming an officer in the US Navy when he was informed that if he made officer-grade, he had to cease playing poker with his friends, who were African-American, Hispanic, Asian and Native American.  The family could have used the money that would arrive if Dad became an officer, but Dad refused to be cut off from his friends.
   Dad was raised on a farm, growing up during the Dust Bowl, and knew the necessity of working hard.  As a child, he was given the choice of working in the field for the afternoon, or playing in the waterhole with his brothers.  The boys chose to play in the waterhole.  When supper was served, everyone got a big first helping of all the food; when the boys reached to grab seconds, they were told that the men had worked, so they could eat as much as they wanted, and if there was anything left, the boys could split it.  At that time, the two "hands" on the farm were an African-American and a Native American.  The boys started to complain, and were informed that if they worked all day, they could eat all they wanted - but they had played.  One of the boys complained that the two hands "weren't even the same color, let alone a family member" under his breath.  Everyone at the table received a long commentary from Grandpa, and the boy who complained was sent to bed, then and there.  Dad learned early that everyone was considered to be equal.
   Mom, on the other hand, grew up on Chincoteague Island, in the state of Virginia, just below the Maryland state line.  While she was growing up, there were only five families of African-Americans living on the island.  And it was in the South.  There was an unwritten, but understood "law" that people of color were not to be seen moving about town unless it was broad daylight; that there was a dusk to dawn curfew set for anyone of color.  Chincoteague, with all of it's history - choosing to side with the Yankees during the Civil War - was not nice, or fair, to African-Americans.  As a child, I remember a few black watermen on Chincoteague, but most blacks were employed as cooks, house cleaners, maids, or odd-jobs-men.  I never really thought about the fact that there were very few people of color on the island.....
    I was born in Virginia, and, by my fifth birthday, when Dad retired from the Navy, after 22 years of service, I had lived in Virginia, Tennessee, and Kingsville, Texas.  When I was four, I was in love with the Hispanic boy next door, who was six, and I spoke better Spanish than I spoke English.  Then we moved to Gainesville, Florida, and I received the majority of my education there; spending the school year in Florida, and most of the summer on Chincoteague.  This was still the segregated south - Florida public schools were not integrated until January 1970, in the middle of my 8th grade year.  Mom and Dad had continued to have friends of all races, and I had, also - but I went to school with white kids, even if I went to church with black and Latino kids...  It was weird.   We were equal in church, but not in school.  Very strange.
   In any event, the majority of my high school graduating class was African-American.  We were proud of our school, and extremely proud that our high school marching band was frequently mistaken for the Florida A&M University marching band.  We had soul.  We could rock and strut with the best of the best.  With school integration, I suddenly learned a lot about African-American history that I had not been aware of - and I was appalled.  In high school, we learned about the Rosewood Massacre - which had taken place in the next county.
    I guess I was a very lucky child, in that my parents wanted me to accept every single person as a person.  Their skin color, eye color, and religious beliefs didn't make anyone a person to be shunned or afraid of.  There is no denying that I am a white woman.  I have Scandinavian and English blood in my veins - I have light colored eyes, very grey hair, pale skin, tons of freckles and lots of cherry angiomas - luckily, I've never been reported as a witch, for I'd fail all the skin tests!
   I have three step-children: two daughters, and the youngest is a son.  The eldest daughter, with red hair and freckles, married a white man and they have a daughter.  The middle daughter, with dark hair, light eyes and skin, married a black man; they have a daughter and a son.  My son married a black woman, and they have two daughters.  All of my grandchildren are perfect!  (Of course!)  I love each of them equally.  Period.
    In the past year, I acquired someone to share an apartment with, to split the costs and save money.  She is a 62-year-old African-American woman.  She was born and raised in Denver; she was the first African-American cheerleader for the Denver Broncos; she and her siblings were the first black kids to attend a Catholic school in Denver.  She is a wonderful friend and companion.  My cats love her.
    Two years ago, Beatrice, my now apartment sharer, and I went into an "upper class" organic food store here in Boulder.  Ten seconds after we stepped through the doors, we had a "tail."  The beverage manager stayed about one yard behind Beatrice, and mimicked her every move throughout our visit.  When we complained about this via e-mail and by telephone, we were assured that the manager was on his lunch break and just happened to be going the way we were....  Humph!  They also gave us a $25 gift card.  We have not returned to that store - Alfalfa's - and we never will.
   Yesterday, we decided to run up Magnolia Mountain and visit Nederland, just to get out of Boulder. We had a great breakfast at Turley's (here in Boulder), and then drove up "the back way" to Ned.  We parked in the town parking lot, and wandered over to the small downtown shops.  I was entranced with the geodes and trilobites and became lost in my own world.  I didn't see that the cashier and clerks pointedly ignored Beatrice, and stepped into aisles so that Beatrice had to move around them.  Helpful?  In no way.   We left quickly.   Then we went into The Rustic Moose.  We could have spent several hours browsing through their huge selection of gift items - Bea bought several items, and I saw several that I want to purchase when I have more cash available.  The ladies in The Rustic Moose were the exact opposite of the silent people in the gemstone shop.  They chatted with both of us, asked a few key questions, and ended up steering us toward things that we both loved.  The women who work in that store are saleswomen par excelance.  We had a very wonderful and reviving experience in The Rustic Moose.
    I hope that cashiers, sales clerks, clerks and managers will read this and contemplate how they approach, or ignore, customers.  Had the folks in the first shop been nice, they could have made a huge sale, instead  of nothing.  The Rustic Moose had a nice sales day, thanks to their friendliness.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

New Chincoteague Pony Babies

Great form for a 4-day-old!  Colt from Carol's Girl and Yankee (Maryland)

Carol's Girl, colt and Yankee in Maryland

Baybe  had a buckskin pinto; presumed sire is Tornado's Prince of Tides

Elusive Star produced a chestnut foal by Riptide

Got Milk has a blaze faced bay with a left blue eye, by Riptide

Got Milk- Riptide foal; last year's half-sister brought a $28,5000 bid

Lorna Dune was with Sockett To Me's herd; they had a bay pinto

Lorna Dune and Sockett To Me's foal

Back on the Maryland end, Carol's Girl and Yankee's colt meets his big sister, Susi Sole

*** Please Note:  The photos of the CVFC mares and foals were taken by DSC Photography.  They sell their photos at a reasonable charge, without the dscphotography copyright mark.  ***


I have been laughing myself silly about a news article from the state of Oregon.  A pet shop reported the theft of a Galapago monkey, or Bush Baby, and a few days later reported the theft of a money jar with Girl Scout cookie donations inside.  Then a laptop computer was reported stolen.  The pet shop was owned by a couple - and, several days after the reported thefts, the male half of the couple was seen behaving erratically on a sidewalk, having just exited an adult pornography store.  The man was arrested after it was found he was high on methamphetamine.  The Bush Baby, named "Gooey" was found in a local motel room - having been given to the out-of-town renter as a "tip." The renter was a prostitute from another town.  Besides finding the monkey, the missing laptop computer was also found.  Police surmise that the Girl Scout cookie money jar was also a part of the tip the male pet shop owner had given the prostitute, but neither money nor jar has been recovered.  The wife of the man charged in the incident was a co-owner of the pet shop.  She is currently having his name removed, legally, from anything to do with what is now her business.  The shop's name?  The Zany Zoo.  Isn't that appropriate?

    As of last night, there were ten foals on the Virginia end of Assateague Island, and the colt on the Maryland end was showing his athletic prowess, jumping over car barricades.  I'll follow this written piece up with photos of the new foals....     For hundreds of years, people have used the words foal and colt interchangeably - but, in strictly correct usage, a foal can be of either gender, while a colt is a male.  Chincoteaguers, however, use the old-fashioned designations for the pony babies - you have either a "horse colt" or a "mare colt."  After working on a horse farm and at a thoroughbred breeding farm, I still cringe when I hear the word colt used indiscriminately, but - that's Chincoteague.  It goes with a lot of local Elizibethan-era words, like pitchpole and pizzle.
   And, speaking of Chincoteague words, I saw a perfect example of  "a scud of rain" yesterday, here in Boulder.  I had just returned to my apartment from picking up friends at the Denver International Airport, and I sat at my desk, as I am now, and looked out the window.  The Flatirons and the front range of hills are usually clearly viewed - but yesterday, as I watched, a wall of wind-driven rain came over the mountains and passed by with a good wind behind it.  We had, perhaps, five minutes of rain, and then the skies cleared behind the scud of rain, and we were dry again in less than 15 minutes.  I had forgotten how one can clearly see a line of rain coming at you when you're out boating, or just sitting on the islands.  Yesterday's scud made it's point.

   Originally, today was my only full day off this month - with absolutely nothing to do.  Well, I'm half-way through my job for today.  I've already been up to Githen's Acres and have released Chocolate and Blackberry from their hutch; I've refreshed their water and made certain they have plenty of food.  I'll need to go back near dusk and re-cage them (for their own safety).  That's my only job today....  I'll start over at Rosie's tomorrow, come home Thursday night, and begin Friday at Tess's.  From May 2 through 8, I'm scheduled only to walk Rosie and Tess daily; then I'm back at other houses until the end of the month...  And one of the couple I'll be house-sitting for (plus 4 critters) will be visiting Chincoteague.  Wish I was going with them......

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Assateague and Chincoteague Photos

Can you tell I'm getting homesick?
Carol'Girl and Yankee's colt, less than 24 hours old

Clapper rail

Cormorants, ducks and gulls at Swan Cove

Assateague Lighthouse at twilight - photo by Deb Iddings Noll

Blue crabs

2015 buy-back ponies grazing in front of the lighthouse

The old Chincoteague Channel swing bridge that I grew up with....  When you heard the bell ring, you knew the road on and off the island was closed, and that marine traffic was commencing.

Who Is (Was) Araminta Ross?

I grew up knowing this woman by another name.  I had no idea that she was born with this name - Araminta Ross.  I knew she was born in Dorchester County, Maryland.  I knew she was born a slave.  I knew she escaped from slavery; was a famous "runaway."  I knew she became one of the most wanted people in the United States before, and during, the Civil War.  But I was taught her name was Harriet Tubman.  Known as "Minty" to her twelve brothers and sisters, and her parents, she was a small child and a small adult, never quite reaching five feet in height.  Her skin was described several times as being the color of a chestnut.  Both of her parents were slaves, and it was known that her mother's mother was brought to Maryland from Africa.  Her maternal grandmother was given the name Modesty.   Her mother, Harriet; and her father was Ben Ross.  Her father was in charge of the timber and forestry on the plantation.  Her mother was a house-servant, and was away from the children all day long.  Minty helped raise her two younger brothers until she was six - and was hired out to work as a nursemaid for a newborn.  If the baby woke up and cried, Minty received a whipping.  She was scarred for life by the time she was seven years old, when she was returned to her owner, with the person who hired her stating she was "no good."
   She spent the next several years both working at her owner's plantation along the Choptank River, and being hired out as a helping hand to other local slave owners.  She began to take an interest in religion, and learned all the gospel songs she heard, plus memorized a great deal of the Bible.  In her mid-teens, she had made a trip to the local village to pick up something for the house.  A young male slave under the orders of an unknown over-seer tried to escape from the village while Minty was standing nearby.  The over-seer threw a two-pound iron weight at the escaping man.  It hit Minty in the head, causing her immediate collapse.  She was identified by other people, and was carried home, unconscious, and laid out upon a loom bench.  She received no care or aid.  When she awakened three days later, she was sent to the fields to hoe weeds.  For the rest of her life, the woman had epileptic seizures, vivid dreams and visions, and fell into a catatonic state from which she could not be awakened - no matter what was tried, including torture.  Her worth as a slave was greatly diminished.
   Around this time, she joined the church and was baptized as Harriet, not Araminta.  Soon, she married a free black man, John Tubman.  However, under current slavery laws, if she had any children, they, too, would be slaves.  Harriet had heard about freedom; she had heard of abolitionists; and her favorite part of the Bible was Exodus, when the Hebrew slaves left Egypt.  She decided that she had a free mind, and that she would be free, or she would die.  The first time she ran away, she took her two younger brothers with her.  After three weeks on the run, the brothers turned themselves in, and Harriet did the same.
   But, by then, she knew of the Underground Railway, run by Quakers (or the Society of Friends) and abolitionists.  She soon ran away again, and found herself a free woman of color in Philadelphia.  Soon after this, however, the Runaway Slave Laws were passed by Congress, and any escaped slave could be returned to their "rightful owner" for a finder's fee.   Harriet Tubman was one of the greatest "conductors" on the Underground Railway.  She made more than 19 trips back into slave states to release her family members and any others who would risk their lives to be free.  There are many books, articles and movies made about the tiny lady that Frederick Douglass called "Moses."
   Now I think I'm a pretty well educated white woman.  But I was raised in the South - schooled in Florida.  I had no idea that Harriet Tubman fought with the Union Army during the Civil War.  I had no idea that she led military troops into battle and freed over 750 slaves in South Carolina.  I had no idea hat the United States had given her a military pension for her service - as a nurse, spy, and leader of troops.  -  I have to admit, to my own chagrin, that I never wondered what happened to Harriet Tubman after the Emancipation Proclamation.  -   Back in 1859, she bought a house in Auburn, New York, and she took her parents there, and nursed them until their deaths.  She, more or less, kept an "open house" for any person of color that was in need.  She was frequently out of money, too.  She gave a part of her land to the AME Zion Church, of which she was a member, with the instructions that  a home for "elderly colored folks" be set up, so they would have a final place to live when their money ran out.  She was very unhappy when the church started charging people $100 to be admitted into care.
   Amazingly, in the 1890s, Harriet approached a brain surgeon at Boston General Hospital and told him she wasn't able to sleep due to the pain and constant "buzzing" in her head.  The surgeon agreed to do surgery, in hopes of relieving her pain, stress and seizures.  Harriet refused an anesthetic (she reportedly "bit a bullet" as she had seen men do during field amputations during the Civil War) - and was awake throughout the procedure.  The doctor shaved her head, and cut the top of her skull off with a surgical saw.  He "lifted the skull" and then replaced it.  Harriet reported that a great deal of pressure was eased, and she felt much better.
   Harriet became a friend of Susan B. Anthony, Emily Howland and other women's rights leaders.  She never ceased to press for a "full freedom" for all people - men or women - white or people of color.
    In 1911 age became so frail she could no longer care for herself, and she entered the retirement home of the AME Zion Church that was on property she had donated.  She died in 1913.  (It is estimated that she was born in 1820 or 1822; no records were kept.)
   She was one hell of a lady!   And I am very proud that the United States Treasury Department has decided to begin using her facial likeness on the front of the US $20 bill - and will relegate slave-owning Andrew Jackson to the backside…..

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Bits and Pieces

I admitted to signing a petition on Facebook: one that fans sign to, hopefully, get the Denver Broncos to bring Tim Tebow back, to try out as the new starting quarterback.   Believe me, I know all of the pro and con arguments regarding Tebow as an NFL quarterback.  I just happen to like the young man, and he's always been extremely polite when we've met.  -  He reminds me a great deal of Steve Spurrier, and I still love the "ol' ball coach," too.  -  Some folks have commented in support, and others have been blatant in their dislike.  Unless someone starts cursing, I'll let all comments stand…  As I said to a friend, if we all had the same opinion about everything, life would be very boring.

    As of this moment, as far as I know, there are six new foals for 2016 on the southern end of Assateague - the ponies that get sold at the Chincoteague Pony Penning and Auction in July.  Of the six, four are definitely boys, one is definitely a girl, and one hasn't presented any body parts to identify. Wild Island Orchid has the filly; Wildest Dream's bay foal is not yet known, but the other four are boys.  I know that the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company has a long-term plan for continuing the herds - each year the foals' bloodlines and conformation are examined.  That decides which foals are designated as "Buy Back" ponies and which are sold to new homes on the mainland, and in other countries.
   I admit that I'm a sucker for baby horses.  I love all of them.  I find all of them cute.  Some foals that other people consider plain, or even ugly, always have some type of beauty.  SO far, I'm in love with all six of the CVFC foals.  I think that Wildest Dream's bay is a filly - and I would love to have her for her size and conformation - not to mention how her strip wiggles like a snake's tail.  But I also really love the other five foals.  Tunie's pinto colt is rugged; and I'd  think the guys would want to keep Lady's buckskin as a replacement for Copper Moose; Lyra's Vega's colt and Wild Island Orchid's filly are beautiful chestnuts.  But, for some reason, I have the feeling that out of the foals born so far, Diamond's Jewel's pinto colt by Riptide will bring the most bidders.  Unless another truly magnificently marked foal arrives - which is always a possibility with our ponies!
   And I've been informed that the (so far) single foal up on the Maryland end of Assateague is also a colt - by Yankee, out of Carol's Girl.

    After the 18.3 inches of soggy snow that fell for four days, most has since melted.  The apple tree in Lynn's yard lost a large limb, and a few willow withies came down, but there was no other damage here.  Most of the snow that was pushed up under the bird feeder tree at my apartment has also melted - I put out 3 pounds of sunflower seeds for the birds and a pound of walnuts, almonds and Brazil nuts for the squirrels today.  I had to clear my throat for Bertrando to realize that I was standing two feet away from him while he was stuffing his face at the feeder….  He looked very surprised, so I was glad it was just me.

    Cupid, the betting favorite for the Arkansas Derby (who finished tenth of eleven), has been diagnosed with a "breathing disorder" and will not participate in the Kentucky Derby.  I wonder if he had an entrapped epiglottis?  I believe that the current betting favorite for the Derby is Nyquist.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Seen on Assateague Island - Photos

Cattle egrets in mating plumage on the beach

Wildest Dream, before foaling    -  photo by DSC Photography

Wildest Dream and her bay foal    -   photo by DSC Photography

Surfing duck

Assateague Lightning, a Maryland pony

Tree growth on the northern end of Assateague

Does this pony's forelock make you think of a political candidate?