I moved into the empty RV on a Marian's newly acquired acreage in early October 2019 under stressful and rushed circumstances and with no certainty about my future. The two black Canadian mares, Tia Jewell and Zadia, who had also been moved there that fall, just a few weeks before me, were likely experiencing similar confusion.
Tia Jewell's Blessing
Born a lead mare who is wired to look after an entire herd, Tia felt drawn to supervising my process of moving in. She stood still and grounded while I unpacked multiple car loads, but also paid close attention to almost every object I brought into the RV.
Like a Raptor
As I was trying to settle in the RV, a slight Jurassic Park feeling came over me when I saw Zadia trying to enter my hiding spot.
The Curiosity of a Young Mare
Zadia is only five years old and endlessly craving new experiences. As soon as I opened the RV door, she attempted to enter and explore the space.
The Valley of Miracles
One of my first mornings in the valley. The property was still just a pristine, unfenced grassland. I looked at the mares grazing in the sunrise and felt a Miracle unfolding before my eyes.
The mares, previously strangers to one another, are becoming friends and, more importantly, a herd.
Ready to Head Out
Zadia was still relatively green in the fall of 2019, so Marian often rode tia around the property and let the youngster tag along at liberty to establish a natural bond. I often joined on foot to take pictures, but didn't feel any inclination to ride just yet.
Fresh hay is delivered to the big barn and the mares are eager to supervise. I am still only beginning to figure out my role in this place, as an inhabitant, farm hand, casual documentarian, friend, and member of the herd.
While I was staying in town for a few days to handle personal business, and -still unaccustomed to RV living and in deep shock from the the change - to seek moments of incomparable warmth and comfort of a regular house, Marian moved the trailer to a sunnier and more comfortable and private location near the lake. The improvement was palpable.
First Fall in the Valley
Tia Jewell overlooking the valley where the noise of heavy duty machines mixes with the smoke from multiple burnpiles.
On sunny days, we began to explore the neighborhood trails and roads. Still a pedestrian by choice, I walked long miles with Zadia by my side.
Tia casually juxtaposes herself against the newly finished fencing.