The Golden Carrot Newsletter's Archive
THE GOLDEN CARROT
December 2005 Newsletter
Donations to TGC this year were $4,000 less than last year. I attribute this largely to this disaster year; people are still reaching deep to help others, there were just so many more needing help! For TGC, it meant old flymasks were reused (they come off a lot, but still pretty much do the job and I was here to put them back on a few times a day); no new blankets (because of the loss of three horses, though, I have enough to mix and match one for each horse in the recent very cold temperatures); difficulty paying for feed (buying smaller quantities at a time; paying off the huge hay delivery much slower than I had hoped to etc.) and having to have the farrier visit more often to do fewer horses each time (luckily, the new farriers make me the last stop on the way home each day, so seldom have time before the sun goes down to do too many horses anyway.)
This year, TGC had no volunteers; Bentley, who offered to exercise a couple of horses a week in the round pen if TGC would take Charra, flaked out after 3 weeks. Visitors were scarce also, and even sponsors who had come in previous years were unable to visit their horses this year.
Old Friends Lost/New Friends Gained
Although we lost Ladyhawke, Simpy Red and One-Eyed Jack, this year we were happy to provide a home for little Charmin’ Charra, and Cha-Cha Indian Dancer. Recent newsletters showed ChaCha and I hope to have new photos showing her progress for you soon. Her appetite is excellent, her spirits are high, and she’s starting to show all kinds of bossy personality. She adores her stablemate Prophet - who is reluctantly beginning to be charmed by her adoration - and when I had to take him out of the paddock for the farrier last week, she screamed for five minutes - then ran to stand close to Joyful, her first friend. I have great hopes that she may actually make a full recovery from the terrible starvation she’d been subjected to.
Charra is a little handful - she doesn’t have any friends amongst the horses, but knows her name and is real responsive to humans - although not always the way you’d like her to be. She’s willful - but shows signs of a lot of good training. I will be hoping to use her for children to ride next year as she seems to be completely sound and has been a child’s ride at her last home. With her sway back, I’m reluctant to ride her myself.
We were able to place Bella with Belinda in Northern California; and help Ed, an elderly thoroughbred whose owner approached me for help when he seemed to be declining in health and losing weight. Ed (NOT Mr. Ed thank you) was very thin, almost as bad as ChaCha, but the problem there was largely management - Ed couldn’t compete with a younger, very fat Quarterhorse and about 20 cows for enough food to keep him hale; with a few hours a day separated from the competition, and some senior feed and Chaffhaye to rebuild him and accommodate his old teeth, Ed is becoming his old self again.
My own personal 2005 was horrible; I made less than $10,000 last year; had to sell my car to help with donations; had my 50th birthday; lost a dear friend; filed for bankruptcy. Although I passed the equine massage course, I have had precisely three jobs from that - and my attempts to do human massage foundered when I was required to strip naked and be a lab rat for other students. Sorry folks, I’m just NOT doing it. (I did try to offer to bring my own ‘volunteer lab rat’ but the schools would not allow it. Isn’t this a scam? The school was making $10,000 for the course per student; halfway through the course, they put the students to work in their clinic - where they get paid for the massage but the student doesn’t. My class was 4 students. At just one massage per week from each student (and they really required more), at $35-50 per, that’s $2800-4,000 more. And we were just one small night class; the other classes had up to 20 students per class! Why couldn’t they supply bodies? I bet a visit to the local construction site, or low cost medical centers would provide all kinds of people with aches and pains and little money who would LOVE a free ‘massage’. I’m still irritated by this.) I’m still looking for someone to "mentor" me in massage. I’ve read about 4 texts on massage as well as two on the structure and function of the body and one on aromatherapy, so am thinking someone will be willing to tutor and mentor me to expand their own business and get me my required "hours" in order to obtain a license. Anyone got ideas in this regard?
Things could be worse I know, and I keep reminding myself of that. But I’m feeling worn down and tired, and worry about what will happen to these horses if something happens to me. It was always my dream that along the way I’d find someone of like mind who would help, become involved and possibly take over at least some of the work here - but that has not happened. If it wasn’t for those wonderful sponsors who seem to instinctively seem to understand the nature of this ongoing enterprise, I’d be alone in this. In a difficult year like this, when human contact is so limited and funds are tight, but the need continues just as strong, will you blame me if I whine a little? Think of these horses, who have worked just as hard, in circumstances mysterious to them, for their whole lives, and who NEVER whine. Maybe I’m hard to take, but it’s not me you help - its them, and THEY deserve it. Please remember them this Christmas and Holiday season-and please accept my wishes for a Happy New Year, and Prosperous 2006 -