Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Wild Horses of Arizona

You know what family is? It's drilling a hole in the exterior wall of your house to string a cord with which to share your internet connection. It might not say that in the dictionary, but that doesn't make it any less true. Anyway, now that my trailer is conected to the world, I better get the word out. It's my duty to warn people. Not about drilling holes in your house, about not forgetting to temper enthusiasm with a dollop of caution.

For some reason, it's hard for me to believe that there are real live wild horses here. I mean, I already had to grapple with the fact that there's more trees than cactus- my mental image of Arizona the desert really clashed with the reality of it's biodiversity. (Don't even get me started on the mind boggling FREE HEALTH CARE.) So when I saw the horses there was no way I was going to miss the photo op. First I had to lay on the ground and roll under the barbed wire fence that borders the forest. This made me feel really cool, like some hardcore safari-ing professional. Or like an action hero. I took a few shots, but was way too far away, so I started creeping towards them. Luckily I was downwind. There were seven, and they all had their heads down as they foraged for lunch. Hunched in a crouch, I scurried from tree to tree, closer and closer. They were all beautiful, reds and buff and a black one that I decided was the alpha male. Which is funny, because it could have been a female at the bottom of the totem pole for all I know. Us humans anthropomorphize on a whim, 'kay? I also decided the light one was the head female.

I had gotten pretty close when she saw me. I froze by the pine that suddenly seemed like inadequate cover. Then she telepathically communicated to her partner my location, and then he too was staring at me. 'Cause I know the wind didn't change, and I didn't make a sound, right? It had to be telepathy. Suddenly the big black beauty took a few steps toward me. There was maybe 75 feet between us. I became aware of how gigantic these wild animals are. It was like they were growing right before my eyes. My heart pounded quicker. These are wild animals!! Was I too close to his herd? OMG- would he actually charge me to defend them? Could I dodge his charge? Grab a branch and swing up into the tree next to me? Would I be stuck there for hours? Should I grab a stick for defense? Adrenaline surged.

I picked none of the above. Instead I started backing up, maybe too quickly, and definitely stupidly, heck, it was pretty dumb to stalk GIGANTIC WILD ANIMALS in the first place. His eyes never left me. My eyes never left him. In fact, I almost tripped over a log because of it. I kept backing, and he didn't take any more steps toward me, though that didn't remove my heart from my throat. Finally, at about 200 feet I turned (my back on a gigantic wild animal) and all but ran back to the fence, dropped, and rolled under to safety. The horses went back to grazing. Another silly human successfully chased off. And another silly human plans to buy a telephoto lens. Amen.


Anonymous said...

wow! how exciting Lala!!!!!!!!!!!!!
and you do have to be more careful in arizona. many wild and strange creatures and climate conditions. watch out for scorpions!!
and many thanks for the beautiful flower picture you sent me
much love,

Anonymous said...

2222222222222 funny hermit girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi LaLa! Greetings from COS. Love your blog. It is just like visiting AZ without the trip!