Sunday, July 2, 2017
2nd July, 2017 Shady Deals
What could be better? Shooting the breeze with your mates, chilling out in the shade, catching up on all the gossip? For the ponies it's not like that. The heat and the insects force them to gather in large groups and seek the shade of the trees. They're not relaxed. There's a tension from pony politics adding to the heat and the relentless attention of the flies. Stand quietly amongst them and it's palpable. Like the Emperor Penguins, standing sentry in the Antarctic, there's constant movement and communication, the flash of a tail, a running foot, agitation and face pulling.
There's a tight jawed awareness amongst the little groups of friendships, as they baggy their own tree and guard it from anyone else.
Juma is still making friends and liked the look of this little filly but her mother made sure he didn't have anything to do with her. You can see how close to the road they are and yet the drivers sail past, oblivious to their presence. Nelly's tension (and probably disgust at not being able to eat) is obvious through her tense mouth, wrinkled nostrils and ears back; she finds it hard to let down her milk and is less than thrilled when Juma butts her teats and then grabs with his teeth.
At the other end of the B3078, there is another kind of shade, on the brow of the hill around some tricky bends. These ponies have the benefit of a cool breeze, assisted by passing cars, but people slow down to look, or stop to try and touch them and even feed them.