This evening I arrived at the barn a little later than I wanted. I jumped into my mucking boots, set the beet pulp to soaking, fed the cat after three quick strokes down her back, then raced to get my chores done before the sun pulled the shade on the day. I was on the roll.
I noticed that Apolinaire was nearby instead of in the pasture as usual. He came over to me and this normally laid back horse walked briskly beside me as I hurried through the paddock with the manure cart. I figured he had something to say to me, and I was enjoying the attention. When I stopped briefly for a couple of fork loads of manure, Apolinaire continued walking, then made a sharp turn in front of the cart and stopped with his large body planted broadside. There was no way around him. That stinker was blocking me!
I asked him what was going on. Instead of firing my usual boring-stuff questions at him, such as what did he need from me, or what message was he bringing me. I walked curiously up to him and stood quietly. He’s been teaching me well… to be still.
Without even thinking, I took a deep breath and let it out. That was all he was waiting for. With that breath, and in precision timing like a dancer in pure form and synchronicity, he curled his body around and in one smooth movement, walked away. I suspect he was feeling proud of himself for a mission accomplished. Maybe even a little smug.
In one clever maneuver, he had gotten me to slow down and became more mindful as I continued with the rest of my evening chores. Quiet amusement at what this horse had achieved with me, entertained me as I worked.