Venus

venus framed nevus 2 framed

 

  What’s in a name?  In some cases, much more than you might think.  My namesake is Venus, goddess of love and beauty. Venus is also the name given to the brightest object in our sky, except the sun and the moon.  People once imagined the planet Venus as a Garden of Eden with lush vegetation and sparkling streams, but in reality beneath the clouds is a planet very different than it first appears.  Earth’s clouds consist of water droplets, but the clouds of Venus are droplets of sulfuric acid surrounding a planet where lightning and thunder flash and boom across a rainless sky.  I am a little bit of both, love and beauty and an ominous cloud covering an angry planet.

 

I’ll give you the good news first.  I’m a refined, Morgan mare with a flowing black mane and a forelock that covers my gentle and sultry brown eyes.  I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard the words “What a stunning horse.”  Everyone agrees, I’m a “looker”, and I’m not shy about strutting my stuff.  I love to pose with my legs and neck extended and my head held high.  When I’m performing under saddle, even though I’m twenty-nine and starting to show my age, I take on the persona of a young and vibrant filly. Spectators are awestruck.

 

If you visit me in my paddock, when I haven’t worked with my stylist, you may not recognize me.   I’m getting a little grey and recently the ribs are starting to show.  I may be losing weight but my sense of humor is intact.  I love attention of the human kind.  If you walk by without stopping to say hello, I’ve been known to pick up my bucket and throw it.  I’ll play ball with you for a treat.  If someone is careless enough to drop something in my paddock, they’ll only see it again if they’re very lucky.  I have great hiding places. The goddess in me is beautiful, elegant, fun loving and proud.

 

It’s time for the bad news.  Horses are highly social herd animals.  Most horses have at least one buddy which is enough to qualify as a herd.  One will be the leader and the other the follower.  I used to live in a tiny enclosure with no other animals around and the people didn’t have enough time to spend with me.  When I was growing up, I didn’t have an opportunity to learn equine language or social skills.  I hate to admit it, but at my age I think it’s too late. 

 

Marcia rescued me about six years ago.  She was told that I couldn’t be lunged because I panic at the sight of a whip.  I was described as nervous and high strung.  They even let it slip that I once flipped a carriage at a show.  If I were Marcia, I would have turned and run, but she didn’t.  She didn’t know everything though.

 

Remember, I mentioned my lack of equine language and social skills and that most horses have at least one buddy.  I think that Marcia expected that I would be grateful for a friend who could teach me to live in peace with other horses.  Marcia isn’t often wrong about horses, but she was way wrong this time.  After I tried to kill the mini, it was decided that I needed my very own paddock.  Not only that, but I refused to be confined to a stall and I made my feelings perfectly clear.  Marcia didn’t give up on me; she didn’t see just the cloud of sulfuric acid; she also saw my love for gentle human contact and attention.

 

I still can’t relate to other horses, but I can relate to the kindness and understanding that Marcia shows me. I have my own private suite at the farm with an open door to my cherished freedom. I appreciate that Marcia is trying desperately to put weight on me.  I love the kids, and the really good riders, who don’t mind being dumped occasionally, love my spirit.  A horse that is appreciated for both her talents and idiosyncrasies is a happy horse.  That’s me.