Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Magic of Spring

Spring is a Donkey. Spring is made of All New Materials: polyester fiber stuffing, acrylic and polyester shell. She is about knee-high to a giraffe and is able to comfortably carry up to 200 pounds, which is about what I am able to comfortably carry, too, as it happens.

Spring joined our family via Dear Aunt Alice, known internationally for her reputation as the World's Best Gift Giver, and caused quite a sensation at Christmas time. Spring belongs to FarmWife's middle daughter.

FarmWife's oldest daughter, far from being too mature for a ride-on donkey of her own, was thrown into such paroxysms of longing by the arrival of Spring that she invented her own imaginary toy donkey, Autumn. Autumn became her constant, invisible companion on or around December 26th, and arrived in the flesh for her Feb. birthday via Dear Granny Joan, known for her reputation as the Grandmother Who Supplies Ponies. Autumn is made of All New Materials, and is not invisible. She is a pleasingly realistic grey.

FarmWife's youngest daughter, at two weeks shy of three years old, has enough of a grasp of the thing to want a donkey of her own, now. Still young enough to submit to peer pressure, this toddler girl was taken aside and given two choices. She chose to name her not-yet-obtained donkey companion Summer, causing HUGE sighs of relief in the barnyard!

You see, dear readers, FarmWife is not above wanting a donkey of her own, but the Polyster/Acrylic set is not for her. She dreams of a real live dust bunny to put in the paddock with yours truly, but pending that unlikely acquisition, she is more than satisfied with her one good mule. Her daughters, pained by the lack of a Winter, real or imagined, to complete their quartet, have pressured her into agreeing to something outlandish!

If and when young Summer joins the family (and there are rumblings that this may take place as soon as early April), I will be esteemed with an additional name of my own. I will be able, dear readers, to introduce myself as the Honorable Fenway Bartholomule Winter Jackson Jones. Though no donkey at all, I am more than willing to be FarmWife's Donkey of the Dark Season. It will be an honor, plus it will mean that we get to join in all the donkey games when the other three girls and their little grey mounts are out gamboling around the place this summer. Perhaps, my friends, you can imagine how happy it makes me to have been relieved of the threat of being known as "Fenway Bartholomule Summer." Even the neutered among us deserve to retain some shred of masculine pride.

FarmWife comes from a family of equine appreciators, and it is to her great maternal satisfaction that she sits, at present, surrounded by one radio flyer ride-on horse, one sit-on donkey (Autumn is away at present, and Summer not yet arrived), one furry rocking horse with realistic neighing sounds, one wooden rocking horse with yarn mane and tail, one black  26" rolling horse, six stick horses, one stick donkey, one stick unicorn, and a half-dozen or so Breyer models who have been relocated to her office from their stables in the upstairs bedrooms. Two hours away, at her mother's farm, FarmWife has access to another handful of ponies in-the-flesh, and in the yard, just behind the greenhouse, grazes yours truly - the worlds best babysitter mule. These children may not be growing up on a diet of weekly lessons and weekend horseshows, but they are getting their recommended daily dose of equines nonetheless. I, Fenway Bartholomule, wouldn't have it any other way.


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