The next visitors to my farm were the Grange friends of my home healthcare nurse. The plan as I understood it was they would all meet once my nurse got off work and then proceed here sometime after 5 PM.
I didn't know what their intent was for sure. Whether it was to get free horses or find good homes for them, it didn't matter as long as it saved my horses from this bad situation. I couldn't bear one more day than necessary of my horses suffering so I would do what it took to get this done despite my breaking heart.
It was just around that 5 when two vehicles with strangers pulled into my driveway. The four women were giggling and talking an incessant chatter, all excited over the horses they were about to see.
It was obvious from their conversation, that my nurse had given them my farm's web address. With that they had been able to find my street address and look at information about my horses.
Looking over the pedigrees, two of the women realized they had grown up just down the road from the breeders of the famous mare line Scandalous and all her descendants are from. As girls they has known national top ten halter mare, Virginia Dare, who won her prize back in the days when Arabian horses were more money than luxury yachts. These women were so pleased to get the opportunity to even see horses from these prized bloodlines they were beside themselves with enthusiasm.
I must admit their gleeful expressions based solely on their feelings about my breeding program took some of the sting out of the reason they were there. If I must give my horses away to protect them, finding people who would actually appreciate what I have done was more than I could have hoped for.
About the time their connection to my horses was revealed, someone's cell phone rang. At the other end of the line was my nurse wondering where everyone was. She was waiting for her friends at some freeway off ramp in Puyallup about a half hour down the road from me. As I recall, It was quickly determined that we would wait for her before beginning the tour of the barns.
It was during this wait that I mustered up the courage to ask if the farrier among this group was open to trimming a couple of horses as, I was told, she had volunteered to do when she first spoke to my nurse about the circumstances here.
As soon as the words left my lips, I wished I could suck them back in. At first the woman's expression read like she wasn't expecting such a request so l didn't really know what to do or say. Then she said something about checking her trunk for tools.
She emerged from the trunk holding the three, most common, farrier tools. With them in hand she said, "I suppose I could do a couple that need it most," so I quickly led them off to the far barn where Dare was stalled.
When my friend had retrieved me from the house on that fateful day when Kelly Panowicz took my two-year-old half Arabian colt, one of her concerns had been that colt's mother. It had been pointed out to me that the mare's hooves were very long and she was lame. Those concerns made Dare tops on my list since my own farrier was booked out another week.
As I brought the mare out of her stall, this woman laughed exclaiming, "I wish my clients knew this was a long foot. I never get to trim nearly 80% of them with this little foot."
I relayed to her what I was told about the mare and her lameness. Then she examined Dare closely before explaining she'd located a big bruise on the bulb of her heel. This farrier said the horse probably limped when the injury first occurred because it was still so painful to the touch. However, the mare was no longer lame and there were no indications the lameness had been anything more than just that first stinging and transitory response of a new injury.
For me this was very good news. My friend's response to this lameness had been one of grave concern. I knew she would be as relieved as I, this was a minor thing.
In hindsight I think her concern was based on the grooming by Kelly Panowicz that was done to influence me. That is exactly how it had worked. My friend's response to various circumstances is why I had not questioned Kelly's motives. I knew my friend would never cause me harm and I had no reason to believe she would ever exploit their friendship. Boy was I wrong about that.
Dare's long feet and her lameness had been used to convince me my horses were suffering. Now this woman was showing me that Dare's lameness was nothing more than a minor, transitory thing that had nothing to do with quality of care.
While I processed this information, the farrier added that the mare's back hooves were not even long enough to trim. That news was definitely inconsistent with everything I had been led to believe about the condition of my horses.
It was just one small piece but I sure didn't know what to think about it so I logged it away and put Dare back into her stall. Then I grabbed Bey Aana for the next trim just as my nurse arrived at the stalls guided by my husband and daughter.
My body shook from exhaustion but I had no intention of leaving. If these women were going to select horses to take from my herd, I wanted to be sure they heard everything they needed to know about them and that their choices would be a good fit.
I had no idea that little contradiction about Dare was only the first challenge to what I had been led to believe by both Kelly Panowicz and Crystal Baker. Before these women left there would be more contradictions.
To be continued...
Strangers.......and Foreign Language...