Yesterday got weird real fast as I was driving from one barn to the next. From over 20 miles away, I could see smoke on the horizon as I drove down one of the main roads I take to get to the barn where I board Eli. It was enough smoke that I thought it was much closer than it was. As I crossed the highway and took up another road heading east, I started to wonder how close the smoke was to the barn. I got closer to the barn and at this point I started genuinely to wonder if the barn was on fire. Fortunately the fire was on the other side of the county road where the barn’s road ends in a T intersection. But still … within walking distance.
We haven’t really had much rain for a few months now. The wind was blowing south to north so I couldn’t even smell the smoke but it was very visible and very close — close enough that Star Flight was pulling water from a stock tank across the street to dump on the fire. If that’s not a reality-check …
Luckily, emergency responders had the fire contained by 7pm. This could have been a nightmare scenario but it wasn’t, at least not for me or Eli or anyone connected to the barn. It was probably someone’s nightmare, though, and is sickening to think about.
Initially, I thought I wouldn’t be riding under the circumstances. But once the fire was contained, I thought I better carpe the f out of this diem and get on. Riding consistently and reliably clears my head of any real or imagined nonsense and I knew I’d regret it all night through insomnia if I didn’t ride.
So I rode, and Eli is definitely feeling good! He seems to think he’s 100%. His new shoes make a big difference for him.
If I ever meet the nice Star Flight people in person, I will probably give them an awkwardly long hug of gratitude. Same for all the people with their emergency vehicles, stationed along the county road, saving humans and animals and property and keeping an eye on hot spots overnight.
Also, PLEASE no one cook out around here until we get rain!