Thursday, 25 December 2014

Spirit's Santa coat

Spirit was confined to his stable for two weeks... after one week he was barging to get to the field and the goose feed but Jessica just let him tip-toe around the yard before tricking him back into his box. On the whole Spirit knew he needed to rest and was quite obedient. On the third week he was allowed out when he wanted to.

He has now run away from Jessica, around to the field, sneaking back the other side to the goose feed and back to his stable with Jessica in tow. He has done his rolling, rodeo dancing, biting and being cheeky. He is not quite back to his naughtiness but I think he is well on his way.

Merry Christmas from Spirit, Jessica and myself.

Copyright ©2014 Helen Hilliard
Emma's Room - Kindle/PC book
Titan's Tale - Kindle / PC book

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Spirit's Playdough!

Paul did his magic on Spirit’s other front foot to make a new shape and size, a new x-ray of it was taken and Paul was happy to carry on with Spirit’s new shoes!.... until he offered up the smallest shoe available... It was far too big for Spirit’s tiny feet; it could not be done.

Paul was not about to give up after all his efforts. He rummaged in his truck and re-appeared with a pair of aluminium shoes, glue, special card (not red!) and playdough  (yes, the stuff kids play with!).

For the next fifteen minutes Paul created two new shoes, glued to Spirit’s feet with a rubber cushion and a wad of Playdough protecting the delicate part of his soles.
All the actors in Spirit’s play were pleased with the end result... including sleepy Spirit. 

The next few days or weeks would tell if it was enough to allow Spirit to walk normally and continue to enjoy his tricks, doing his rodeo, rolling, biting, chasing, watching over orphaned ducks, carrying saws, throwing bricks, dismantling electric fences, eating five packs of Polos, limbo dancing under the fencing, sneaking the goose feed from the dustbin and being the life and soul of Blacky, Jessica and all on the farm.

Copyright ©2014 Helen Hilliard
Emma's Room - Kindle/PC book
Titan's Tale - Kindle / PC book

Monday, 22 December 2014

Spirit: kissing the beast!

‘Well...’ Paul said slowly, ‘I really do not think it will help him but I will cut back the hoof and we can go from there.’  The whole stable omitted the biggest sigh of relief you have ever heard.

Paul worked in a strained silence as Spirit’s feet became smaller and smaller. Having the x-ray to work from he could cut away without the danger of hitting the all important pedal bone. Spirit was unaware of the ongoing drama, you could almost hear him snoring in his owner’s loving arms... which, I might add ached like crazy for days afterwards. Jessica took her chance while she could to cuddle and kiss the unwitting beast in her arms.

The foot was trimmed as much as he dared ... now for a new x-ray to see if it had made enough difference to put the new shoe on; The tension was palpable as Spirit happily placed his new foot on the machine. Paul and Gary knelt down to view the screen; Gary’s face lit up with delight and a glance of ‘I told you so’ flicked across to Paul. For the first time since the nativity play had started Paul actually smiled and agreed that Spirit’s foot now looked almost normal, I’m not sure he could believe what he was seeing. 

Copyright ©2014 Helen Hilliard
Emma's Room - Kindle/PC book
Titan's Tale - Kindle / PC book

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Fate of Spirit in farrier's hands...

Paul explained his reasoning for walking away from helping Spirit; ‘the pedal bone is so far rotated that there will be no coming back from this one, he will not survive much longer no matter what I do today’.

Jessica felt she was playing the lead role in a surreal sad film like Black Beauty, only she really did not want to be there.  She really just wanted to take her beloved Spirit away from it all.

John, myself, Gary, his apprentice and Jessica stood in silence for a moment after Paul had said his piece. Unlike me, I held my tongue, feeling it was not my place to speak; as time ticked by I was thinking ‘I shall have my say soon if no one else pipes up.’

Gary the vet was standing with his back to me facing Spirit Jessica and Paul whilst John, Spirit’s farrier was beside me and a few steps behind Gary. Gary seemed to grow in size, his medium frame that, only a few minutes ago hoisted Spirit back into his stable, now doubled in size whilst John slowly moved forward as if to back up the vet in an imminent street fight. Gary calmly and eloquently battled Spirit’s corner; Whilst he understood the basis of the farrier’s decision he explained how Paul was the only person there who did not know the fortitude of this amazing pony, how Spirit had the spirit to continue with a content and often mischievous life whilst in the feet he now has. He made an amazing speech that brought tears to all of our eyes, even tough John’s. This wonderful vet concluded his speech by saying ‘We have a saying at the vet college: “we treat the pony not the x-rays”.’

I could see only Jessica's face past the broad shoulders of Gary, she was trying to hold it all together keeping a serious expression but I could see a glint of hope in her eye. I had the biggest grin on my face and was punching the air with my fist in delight; Gary could not have made a better case for dear Spirit. 

Still Paul was hesitating and about to walk away from the scene when John stepped up to the mark, putting forward his belief in the tenacity of this amazing pony.

The stage fell silent again, this time the audience was waiting on Pauls next line....

Monday, 15 December 2014

The curtain rises on Spirits play

The stage was set; the props in place, the play began:

Gary positioned Spirit’s foot for his photo shoot and Spirit gladly obliged, not really knowing what was going on, chilled out in his own little world. 
The x-ray appeared on the screen, Paul looked on in silence. After a while he asked to speak to Gary outside the stable! Jessica, holding Spirit’s neck, glanced over to me, the look between us said it all: ‘what are they talking it bad news?’

Although I was positioned just outside the stable door and straining hard, I could not hear their exchange of words. Five minutes that seemed an eternity passed before they both returned to the stage; Paul looked again at the x-ray and shook his head.  I have worked on many feet but.... I’m afraid I am going to have to walk away from this one!’ Paul said gravely.

Jessica and my hearts missed a beat, whilst she held back her tears I was puzzling around in my head: ‘this is not right, this is not the way it plays out today, I know it isn’t... I KNOW Spirit does not get condemned today, something is wrong here!’ I thought to myself as silence engulfed the stable....

Copyright ©2014 Helen Hilliard
Emma's Room - Kindle/PC book
Titan's Tale - Kindle / PC book