Clockwise from top left: The boys before the demonstration (photo by Ron Marino); the boys getting used to the arena; Zelador picking up the bunny; Zelador playing with the name cards; part of Winnie and Bill’s hula hoops routine; Zelador touching the bunny; Ron Marino with Zeloso at the pedestal. Photos by Ron Bubnich

Allen Kalpin took the first photo before the demonstration, Horses in the City, began in downtown Toronto. The boys had been playing (and rolling) in the arena beforehand. They had a wonderful time. They cantered, they bucked, they zigged, they zagged. There were a few leaps. The speakers were positioned just above the kickboards to the left. I was stunned when they quickly accepted the noise booming out of them. Amazing! If the noise had been continuous, I would have understood them getting used to it, but it wasn’t. The noise came and went at irregular times.

I’m so glad the demonstration was the first day of the heat wave, not the second day or the third day or the fourth! The humidex was above 40 degrees.

Zelador and Zeloso had NEVER been to this venue. They had two stalls that looked out a huge open door where they could see streetcars, buses, people, bicycles, trailers, (you name it, they saw it).

When we were done and back in the stalls, I was standing in front of Zelador. At one point his left side quivered, starting at the hip and progressing along the top of his body to his withers. My instant reaction was, “A Ghost!” A few minutes later Ron Marino joined me (he’d helped us with every detail of the outing, including loading the heavy pedestals and teeter-totter!!!!). Zelador quivered again. This time only his left hip and the muscles on the left side of his back bone twitched. I told Ron my Ghost theory. He looked up and said, “Shavings.” I looked, too, and that’s when I noticed that the pile of shavings from cleaning stalls had just reached to the top of Zelador’s stall wall. Whew! I was very happy to abandon my Ghost theory!

That’s when I remembered one of my favourite stories from “Letters From Wingfield Farm”. This is a one-man play that is GREAT! In this particular instance Walt Wingfield was determined to show the town that the fallen grist mill stone was not cursed. However, when he harnessed his horse, King, and tried to pull the stone out of the deep hole, good ole trustworthy King spooked and the next thing Walt knew he was waking up in a hospital. Turned out a friend talked him into retracing his steps, without a horse. Sure enough at the precise spot where King spooked a brown toad hopped under the men’s feet. THEY spooked! Mystery solved. Curse put to rest.

It’s only 35 degrees outside…and something quite warm inside (our air-conditioner broke!). I’m stepping away from the computer and finding a cross-wind, if there is one.