Thursday, August 22, 2013

Saying Goodbye

Monday started out just like any other day. I was awakened early by a cooing baby, then Brown-Eyed Boy came in asking for chocolate milk. I put Baby Blue Eyes in the stroller and went out to feed the horses.
I knew something was wrong when I heard Sultan whinnying, but he didn't come into his pen to eat. I walked back behind the barn and found him standing there, his right hind leg cocked like he was afraid to stand on it. He ducked his head and shifted his weight forward as if he desperately wanted to come to me, but he wouldn't budge from his spot.
I put his halter on and, with a little encouragement, I got him to move. Hopping on three legs, he followed me into his pen.
I immediately called the vet. Her diagnosis: his leg was broken, just above the hoof.
I knew what was coming after that before she even said anything.
This day was inevitable. Sultan was almost 29 years old. I knew he wouldn't live forever. But somehow I had always pushed that to the back of my mind. I thought that since he was so old, since he had lived a full life, it wouldn't be so hard when I finally had to let go.
No. It was still hard.
I couldn't say goodbye long enough. Memories flooded through my mind, and for a moment I was thirteen years old, back in my moonlit front yard, watching as my dad unloaded my very own horse--my Sultan--from the trailer. For a moment Sultan was young and strong again, that spirited horse who would run away with me and try to buck me off. For a moment we were racing together again through a farmer's field, going so fast the wind sang in our ears. For a moment those long years, which had passed so quickly, had never passed at all. 


When the vet was ready, I kissed Sultan's velvety nose one last time, then slipped away. I wanted my last memories of Sultan to be of him with light still in his eyes. So I went into the house and cried like a baby.
Sultan is in a better place. He is no longer old, no longer suffering. But our pasture sure looks lonely without him. And my heart sure hurts when I step outside and think, for a second, that I hear him whinnying at me.  
Grateful for the sixteen years we had together,
The Brown-Eyed Girl


Monday, August 12, 2013

Mr. Brown Eyes' Birthday

Last month, Mr. Brown Eyes and I celebrated his birthday by going go-kart racing.
These are the electric go-karts that get up to 40 miles per hour. Which didn't sound that fast to me, until I was sitting in the driver's seat with a big ol' helmet on my head, slamming the brakes around those tight curves because I was terrified of spinning out, feeling the rush of wind as every other driver sped past me.
Our first race, I came in dead last.
Mr. Brown Eyes, or Mr. Second Place, gave me some tips to drive a little faster. So during our second race, I picked it up a little.
Still dead last, though.
Mr. First Place said to me, "I dare you to mash down the gas and go as fast as you can."
I took his challenge to heart. Our third and final race, I was determined not to be the loser. I put that pedal to the metal, flew past other drivers, and whipped around those corners like a go-kart racing fool.
And then I crashed into the wall.
It was a plastic wall, more of a divider, actually. But they had to stop the whole race and come pull me out. It was embarrassing. And it made my head hurt.
But when the results were posted, I was second-to-last.
Mr. Brown Eyes was proud.
Afterward, we had dinner at an amazing little place known as a revolving sushi restaurant.
Our first experience at a place like this was in Oregon, when we were dating. It was a magical discovery earlier this year to find that there are some here in Arizona.
You sit down, and endless plates of delicious sushi come marching past you on a little conveyor belt.

You pick what you want and dig in.


The plates are priced according to color. You just stack up what you've used and the waitress adds it up later.

Our stack of plates always gets pretty high. Go figure.
 Happy birthday, Mr. Brown Eyes. Thank you for being born so you could be mine.
The go-kart racing queen,
The Brown-Eyed Girl








Monday, August 5, 2013

Baby Talk

Baby Blue Eyes and her cousin are only five days apart.
When they get together, cooing and gooing, kicking their chubby little legs and waving their chubby little arms, I wonder what they are saying to each other... 

 "Hey cuz, why do you think they're all watching us?"
"I don't know. It's making me uncomfortable."
"Maybe I should fart. That always makes them laugh."

"I rolled over the other day. Got 'em all excited."
"Ah, parents. They're so easily amused."
"I know, right? All I have to do is chew on my toes and my mom tells me how I adorable I am."

"This is the life, you know? When we get older, we'll have to poop on the potty and eat our vegetables."
"Let's stay babies forever."
"Hey--pull my finger."
"Just you wait until I can crawl. Your toys are mine."

I'm sure it's something along those lines,
The Brown-Eyed Girl