Tawnee was going through some of her Grandmother’s old magazine clippings, and found this sweet story she thought you would like very much on this wonderful Christmas day. The magazine is “Country” and the article was written by Lory DeBeir from Illinois, the title of the article is:
Even as a very young girl in Chicago, I lived for the sound of the milk wagon horse clip-clopping down our street.
Whenever I managed to squirm out of my mother’s arms, I’d dash out the door and lock his shaggy foreleg in an affectionate hug. Luckily, the huge horse always stood still as a statute until mom could pry me away from him.
I’ve loved horses as long as I can remember, and in return, they’ve given me a lifetime of wonderful adventures. But none will ever be quite as special to me as “Nicki”, the horse Heaven sent.
We moved to the country when I was 5, and my parents gave me a mischievous Shetland pony that tossed me to the ground every chance he got, I didn’t mind too much, though, and was totally inconsolable the day they told me he’d gone to “horse Heaven.”
Father promised to buy me a horse in the spring. But when springs arrived, he was too busy or preoccupied with his work to remember his promise. I did my part by continually reminding him.
And just to be sure, I concluded my prayers each night with, “Please, God, send me a horse.” I imagine thousands of little children have voiced that same request, but in my case, it really worked.
One bright spring morning, I was helping my parents clear up some of the winter’s debris near our big red barn. I glanced up and noticed the figure of a thin old dark bay horse wandering along the the narrow gravel road in front of our farm.
He slowly made his way into our yard, where he stopped and allowed me to walk up to him. I was ecstatic and promptly led him to a stall in the barn.
My father was sure, though, that the horse had escaped from a neighbour’s pasture. So late that day, he made inquires all up and down the road. A few farmers recalled seeing the scrawny old horse ambling along, but no one in the neighbourhood claimed him.
Later in the week, Father placed an ad in the local paper asking if anyone had lost a horse. Nobody ever answered the ad. The old gelding was mine, and I named him Nicki.
The only plausible explanation we could come up with was that Nicki had been destined for a local mink farm that bought decrepit old horses to slaughter.
Truck drivers often pulled off the highway onto our gravel road to sleep. Perhaps the driver that morning has arrived too early for his delivery and decided to take a nap. Nicki must have escaped somehow and set off down the road into the darkness.
He turned out to be the perfect mount for a small but determined child. The old fellow gently carried me many, many miles along the country roads and farm fields around our home.
Nicki only lived a little more than a year after wandering up our lane. But he got to spend it with a little girl who loved him more than anything. He was the answer to my prayers. And if horses could pray, I’d like to think I was the answer to his.
This is a photo of Lory with Nicki so many years ago.
Just remember, next blog update and emails being replied to on Sunday!
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