September 24, 2016 was the day. It was the day that our new filly, Penny, would be coming home to live on the farm with us. It was a day I will never forget.
Penny was pulled from the livestock auction by owner of Equine Rescue Network (ERN), Janine. Janine had seen this little filly at a previous auction house and knew this was her time to give this filly a new chance at life. She “saved” her on May 26, 2016 and loaded her up on a trailer and made the trip back to her home in MA.
Penny was sick and needed to be quarantined but was finally ready to make her trip even more north to Chester, NH. There she was, waiting for her big chance and that day finally came on September 24th 2016.
I had visited with Penny a few times before the big move. I brought Jared to meet her and we both felt a special bond to this little girl. She was very curious and seemed to like to follow us around. We had about a month and a half to prepare her paddock, run-in shed and invest in everything she would need.
We had nothing to start with. Her paddock was previously a dense pine Forrest that we had cut. We had stumps, roots and rocks to move around. We agreed on the placement of her run-in shed and started working on the fence. It was a lot of work in a short time but the motivation to bring her home gave us momentum.
Since Penny was my first horse I had to consider what I needed to buy. Halters, lead ropes, brushes, grain, water buckets, etc. With winter approaching we needed a jacket, heaters for the water trough, etc. It was a big list to consider but we took our time and pushed through.
Finally, the morning of 9/24/2016. I couldn’t sleep that night. I was dreaming about Penny and the excitement was uncontrollable. I wanted Jared to come with me but he had to stay behind to do some last minute things with the fencing. I drove to Chester alone, about an hour drive from my house. My mind was racing. This was the day I was waiting for all of my life.
When I got there no one was around. The barn manager wasn’t there, my horse transporter was still on her way. I decided to get Penny’s halter and get her on a lead rope and put her in the empty paddock so we can load her up quickly. I had to find her halter and lead rope first. Once I located them I opened the gate and was quickly rushed by a herd of mares, geldings, colts, and filly’s. They all were sniffing, snorting and crowding around me. Then this enormous lead mare comes in to the circle and for a moment I got scared. She started kicking and rearing warning the herd to back off and let her investigate. I found my escape and jumped through the fence and was out of there. Penny was busy eating hay in the corner and she was just too far me to go in there and get her without the hassle of the herd.
I stood patiently by the gate and started calling to Penny. She finally picked up her head and started walking towards me. Oddly enough none of the other horses followed, just Penny. I left her have a sniff on my hand and opened the gate and she walked right through the gate. Just like that! I was in shock. This little filly was coming home with me and she made that easy. It was like she knew.
Once the horse transporter showed up I let her have the lead rope and up Penny went into the trailer and just like that we were on the road home. We walked her into her new paddock and dropped some hay on the ground for her to forage through. It was the day our home became a farm.