Free At Last

“Hello Deborah, this is Beatrice. I have Stoney and Cowgirl.” Between her thick, French accent and the incongruity of her statement, it took me a minute or so to figure out that Stoney and Cowgirl had escaped.
I must have left the gate unlatched after the farrier left this morning. Cowgirl and Stoney don’t seem to know much about testing gates so I assume the wind blew it open at some point and out they went on their merry way.
Beatrice and family live only three blocks away from Stoney and Cowgirl. When I arrived to retrieve the ponies, Matthieu and Helen, having successfully secured the ponies with jump ropes around their necks, where happily playing on them while the equines obligingly worked at mowing the grass in Beatrice’s backyard.
It couldn’t have been a better day for Helen and Matthieu who enthusiastically described the daring rescue. When they had first approach the ponies, Stoney headed off down Robleda. Matthieu later admitted that he’d tried to lasso Stoney, which had had the opposite of the desired effect. But when Stoney crossed the street, Helen then had to scream and wave her arms madly at the traffic to get them to stop. (I got a dramatic re-enactment.) She did succeed in getting the traffic to stop in both directions.
Helen and Matthieu both proudly accompanied me back to Quail, or rather I accompanied them, as they led the ponies and I took up the rear with the dog. Back at Quail, Helen got to work madly sweeping the aisle and the tack room and chastising me for it’s neglected state while Matthieu sprayed water at Dante (who loves getting sprayed with water).
Walking back to their house, we tried to find clues to the route the ponies might have taken, while Matthieu and Helen, the child heros, repeated, several times, the story of the afternoons escapade. I’m afraid they were so excited that they will have a very hard time getting to sleep tonight, but I do feel confident it’s a story they will tell again and again.

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