ONE OF THOSE DAYS

Some days just go well. Minutes pass into hours that transition easily through the entire day. Before you know it, the day is gone. You have accomplished great deeds and feel really good about yourself. I have had days like that but today was NOT one of them.

It started out ok. I actually got my lazy self out of bed when the 4 a.m. alarm rang. I was so proud to have savored only one cup of tea before heading out into the single digit wind chill.  I made it to the barn without falling on ice and all seemed perfect.

It all started to fall apart when I was on my way, loaded down with feed buckets, to the small barn. I heard water running. "CRAP," I tought, "A broken pipe."

Well, the pipe wasn't actually broken. Just the handle on the spicket was, and, water was everywhere. It flooded the hay room and the back half of the barn aisle. Um, when it is this cold, FLOODED means ICED. The whole back half of the barn was a sheet of ice.
"That's ok," I told myself. "I won't fall." And I didn't. I was so proud.

I fed the ladies, put out hay and went into the house for a bit while they ate. I sat down for what felt like a few minutes, looked up and realized I was probably going to be late for work.

I practically RAN back to the barn, turned out the horses, slipping and sliding all the way.

I made it to work on time and REALLY nothing went wrong. Unless I count that I had to haul 7 buckets of hot water to an outside pipe to thaw it out so the sink would drain so I could clean the halter of one of my all time favorite mares who will ship to sale tomorrow.

I just couldn't seem to do anything right. Everything I suggested was wrong. Everything I tried to do took too long and then somehow things were just breaking in my hands. I'd try to take a water bucket off its hook, the snap broke. When I used the sink, it would leak, and so on…

I started thinking I needed to make the day easier. I've been fretting about the bedding issue for the ladies. I had been using bagged shavings and owe a ton of money. The stalls are pratically bare and I needed to do something quick. So I called my hay guy to ask for straw.

GREAT, he had some.  It meant no lunch break for me, no time inside, but I could go pick up 28 bales…two bales per stall. Off I went.

My volunteer, Elaine, would be here to help clean, then bed the stalls. I truely believed that the day was getting better. I proudly pulled that truck load of straw up the the barn and went in to clean stalls.

Meanwhile, Cruella and Bel's Starlet were UNLOADING the straw bales. FIVE bales on the ground!

OK, so no bales broke apart. This had  to be a good sign. Except, the straw was REALLY crappy. It was hard as a rock, nearly impossible to seperate. Honest to goodness, it took nearly twenty minutes to bed each stall.

As I tried to unload the bales inside the barn, a bale ( loosened by the so called ladies) shifted, fell and smacked me in the face. I SAW STARS! But there was work to be done so I shook it off and kept going.

Elaine left shortly afterward to get her daughters off the bus. I was on my own.

I was WAY behind. The ladies were hungry, my fingers ached from trying to pry apart the straw and suddenly a fight breaks out in the hay room. A STRAY CAT! A PREGNANT STRAY CAT! The regular barn cat wasn't as happy as I was about that and I am pretty upset. I already have 18 cats, most of them strays.

That is when I noticed the faucet running again. It wouldn't turn off. I called Pete and just cried. He left work to hurry home.

Meanwhile, I jimmied the dang faucet down to a trickle and in between bedding stalls, I emptied the bucket it trickled into.

I kept working. I stopped being cold at about 5 pm even though I had been outside ALMOST non stop since about 7 am.

Pete got home just as I was getting ready to put hay inside the stalls. The ladies were content but I was exhausted.

When we finally got down to the house, Pete asked, "What happened to your face?"

That straw bale that fell tore a good chunk out of my left cheek. It was so cold out there the blood kind of froze and I didn't even realize how bad it looked.

Oh, I'll be ok. Just brusied, battered sore and really unwilling to face another day. Tomorrow, if it is suppose to stay below 30 degrees all day, I'm staying inside. In fact, I think I'll just stay in bed tomorrow.

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