Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), and several Kindle ebooks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Cupcake at 30

When I was a kid, I wanted a bright chestnut horse with a wide white blaze and a long flowing mane—just like Gene Autry's Champion. Finally, decades past childhood, I got one.

On May 11, 1981, my mare Cupcake (registered name G's Liberated Lady) was born. She wasn't mine then, and I missed her entrance into the world, but I was there when she stood up.

Sun's Fair Lady, age 16, looks at her new daughter.

Granted, she was a little wobbly, but she made it. I watched as she took her first steps.


Her owner hoped to make her into a big-time show horse, but decided that Cupcake—with her daisy-cutting gait—wouldn't be a flashy high-stepping show horse. She offered her to me. I bought Cupcake for $300 when she was six months old.

Here she is in early December 1981, shortly after I bought her:

Cupcake's mom, Fair lady, grazes in the background.

By the time she was a yearling, she looked considerably different.


As she grew older, my husband showed her in trail racking classes. Here they are at Pine Spur in 1985. Cupcake won 4th place out of 10 at this particular show.


While she was my husband's show horse, she was my trail horse. 

On top of Mount Rogers.
Entering the Blue Ridge Parkway Trail.
Eventually I showed her, too. We won a lot of ribbons at Pine Spur (below) and other shows.


Racking

1st Place—Trail Racking

1st Place—Franklin County Pleasure
Cupcake's grooms are Marcie Petrocci and Ruth Garrido

Cupcake wasn't a hunter, but sometimes she entered hunter classes. Below, 9-year-old Ruth Garrido rides 6-year-old Cupcake as a hunter at Hunting Hills Stables.

Hunting Hills Stables is now a Wal-Mart parking lot

Marcie shows her 4th place ribbon at a Hunting Hills Stables show.

And sometimes Cupcake even jumped, though not with good hunter form.

Ruth rides Cupcake in a scurry race at a Bedford show.

But where we really excelled was costume class! One of our best costume ensembles was wedding party. Cupcake was always the bride and I was the groom. Our wedding party varied.

Minister-Karen Poff, Flower girl-Marcie Petrocci, Bridesmaid-Laurie Williams

Check out the 1st place ribbon at Pine Spur.

And another 1st at a 4-H show at the Salem Civic Center.
Ruth is minister; Leslie Richardson and Marcie are bridesmades.

Cupcake and I have had a lot of adventures. She was a hellion when she was younger, but now she's mellowed. She also had a lot of health problems—a couple episodes of founder, hoof abscesses, hoof and fetlock injuries from being entangled in a high tensile fence twice, Cushing's disease, a possible stroke, and now complications from a hoof abscess. At the same time, I had health problems, too—among them, chronic mono, plantar fasciitis, diabetes. 

In 1995, when Cupcake had foundered and I had come through 22 months of mono, I bought Melody. I boarded the mares at a variety of places until we bought our place in Franklin County. Now they're in the back yard.

Melody and Cupcake a few years ago.
It's hard to believe thirty years have passed since I was there to see Cupcake take her first wobbly steps.  

She still eats heartily and knickers impatiently when she hears me coming with her grain. But in her old age, she's getting wobbly again and she naps several times a day in her stall. I don't know how much time she has left. A year, maybe? Two? 

But I'll be there when she takes her last steps.
~


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2 Comments:

Blogger anita said...

AH, it warms my heart and makes my day. she' a a lovely lass. Happy B-Day Cupcake! Both of them are darling girls and you've done well by them!

9:17 AM  
Blogger R.M. said...

Thank you so much for sharing your picture album with us! Fantastic pics, and she is a lovely, beautiful horse. I just love Mt. Rogers, great place to ride. Awesome!

1:20 PM  

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