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Wanderlust cured’s Travel Diary

Friday, 21 Aug 2009

Location: My Brain., Canada

MapA dream lived.

Its been warm the past few days, the sunshine beats down as I work outside all day. I break a sweat and feel it rolling down my forehead and onto my cheeks, I wipe it off and realise its been 3 hours since I took my last drink of water. Being at the Ranch barely feels like work. Duties are merely things that need to be done in between play time with the array of animals and my constant wildlife watching. Hawks, eagles and owls have kept me company the past few days. There are osprey nesting right near the ranch, I hear their shrill sweet call as they communicate with each other. One hawk sits in a tree on a trail I make my return on right above the gopher dens, the noise that he makes as he flys off is that long shriek that birds of prey let out on the movies - wonderful! I watched an eagle as I was eating lunch, he used the thermals rising up from the rocky mountains, soared along and didnt flap his wings for what felt like eternity. I dont want to leave, but its enivitable. The winter will come, the snow will fall and the cold will become unbearable. The fat healthy elk will again struggle to find food beneath the snow, the bears will hibernate and the ground will again freeze over, asleep for the many months to follow.

I will miss walking towards the Ranch as the cats come towards me and flop onto their backs for a belly rub, Ive never met cats like it. Boots remains wide and solid while Whiskers lean, the obvious hunter of the two bringing me many a mice since I have been there. I will miss Storms greetings, his wide smile and his happy tail and the little jumps he makes to meet my fingers, just to make sure I know he is still there. I will miss Levis, his intuition overtaking his total blindness, he comes to me right at the moment that I have spare time and free hands, not a minute before, not a minute after. He knows. Somehow he knows.

I will remember the horses, with their special quirks. Bucks personality as he sticks his head through the fence to see if there is anything for him for lunch, the way he rested his head on me just to be close. The way that Winny puts her head right to the ground as you pull her bridle out, well trained thats for sure. I will miss Targets deep nostril and throat noise as I bring out their oats, sweet quiet Target, its the only time he demands anything. I have the image of Frosty & Caddy standing together, inseperable, Mother & Son, so close they would be touching. It will soon be the last time that Steve the handsome Palamino will have to have a drink before he heads out like it will be his last and they way his tongue curls while he drinks. Bossy Baxter will still be there, his head over the fence, mostly still, the other horses know not to mess with the horse from Russia, leader of the pack. Patches shy personality, it took him awhile to warm to me, he required a different approach, soft, gentle and slow. I will miss the giggles from the riders as old Ticker's farts sounded like explosions, sometimes scaring the other horses, often glad I was on him, not behind him. They will all remain a part of a wonderful summer I had in Canmore, Alberta, Canada. An unforgettable summer, but one which I must move forward from onto the next adventures. I have around 3 weeks left at the Ranch. I love appreciating things before I no longer have them, the next 3 weeks are going to be more wonderful knowing that they are numbered. I no longer wear gloves as I saddle up the horses so I can feel their fur, who needs long fingernails and clean hands anyway?

A dream lived - Horse guiding in the Canadian Rockies. X