The New Year Came In With Wind And Rain

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I thought the weather on Christmas was strange but it isn’t any better for the New Year. It’s January 4 and the temperature hit a high of 52 degrees overnight with high winds and rain. This is not typical for this part of Ohio.

On Saturday morning, very early, the rain changed to freezing rain and led to a number of accidents including one very sad fatality at a rest stop. A pickup truck slid into the side of a semi at the rest stop. The semi driver got out of his truck and was struck and killed by another pickup that was sliding on the ice. Very sad.

I really missed a white Christmas. The snow makes everything look so special. With all the rain we’ve had, it’s just muddy and brown.

The birds have been eating up all the bird seed and suet as soon as we put it out. The joke at our local feed store is that we’re feeding all the birds in our county! They may be right especially last year during a snow storm!

Samson and Delilah, my young miniature donkeys, are very content to stay in their stalls with this wet weather. They’ve never been out in the rain or snow, and I really don’t ever want them to experience bad weather outside.

I know I spoil them! It’s hard not to … they are like big family dogs.

In the past, I’ve written a series of stories for our local paper on life with Sammy and “D,” sharing their antics and how attached to them I’ve become. I had one woman ask me if I bring them in the house during bad weather! No way ….

They have such different personalities.

Sammy is very active, always on the move even in his large stall. He’ll run around with one of his toys and try to get Delilah to play with him. Sometimes, I think she just shakes her head and thinks, “Grow up, little boy!” He really likes to pester her.

Delilah, on the other hand, is very laid back and calm. She plays with her toys but not as enthusiastically as Sammy.

There are big rubber mats on the floor of the barn and in their stalls under their straw so they won’t slip on the concrete. In one part of the barn, just outside of Delilah’s stall, I have a huge piece of carpeting in an area that doesn’t have a rubber mat.

The piece of carpeting has now become their newest toy. They used to have a small braided rug they played with and shared but this is really a BIG piece of red carpeting!

Delilah picks it up in her mouth and drags it into her stall by the gate that separates their stalls. She then must push it toward Sammy, who waits on the other side of the gate. He then must grab it in his mouth, pulling it into his stall. He then drags it around.

The other day, they had it in Sammy’s stall, but we noticed there was a lot of dust on the railings of the gate. It appeared they had somehow actually gotten that huge piece of carpeting OVER the railings instead of under the gate. I wish I could have seen them in action!

That same day, I noticed that Sammy hadn’t eaten all of his hay out of the hay rack. That’s very unusual for either one of them … they are eating machines. He was also somewhat agitated in his stall, prancing around is if to say, “Hey, Mom, you want to check my hay rack?” Sure enough, mashed inside the hay flake was a dead snake! This isn’t the first time that has happened. I’m sure it got “baled” right with the hay when the bale was created in the field.

We get hay and straw from our good friends and neighbors up the road, Gary and Bonnie. They make hay across the road from the house.

Bonnie and I share a practice when we feed hay to our critters, we always wear heavy gloves for just that reason! We can find all types of small creatures buried in the hay!

Fifteen years ago, during my corporate life, I never would have thought I’d be so unaffected about a snake ANYWHERE, let alone in a bale of hay! To quote a favorite TV person, Lt. Joe Kenda, “My, my, my,” how things change!

I wouldn’t trade the country life for anything else in the world!