Saturday, 22 August 2015

Call of the Killdeer

For the three days after leaving the Setting Sun Stables on Saturday June 27th....
 I continued to ride towards my summer destination of Crown Point south of Chicago, sometimes along pretty gravel roads but more often along quiet but endless 'blacktops' (tarmacked roads) through flat monotonous crop land...

It rained on and off, but happily I was well supplied with waterproofs, including a pair of plastic bootees given to me by Trudy, and kept warm and dry the whole way. Not so the crop fields, which have suffered badly from the wettest June on record in Indiana..
A different sort of crop circle, and not so benign..
But I continued to be entertained by the killdeer which have been with me the whole way from Ontario.  These are little birds of the plover family which tend to lay their eggs in stony and gravel areas, thus often at the sides of gravel roads that I ride along.
Their cry is constantly to be heard as they feign injuries to lure potential predators away from their exposed but camouflaged nests. The name is apparently an onomatopoeic version of their call, though I feel this can stretch the imagination at times.  What is your opinion? This is probably the nearest it comes to it  ...
Many thanks to Tina Prout at the excellent Creekside Equicentre near Lakeville for generously giving Lady overnight run of her indoor riding school on Saturday, and letting me camp in the observation gallery - Tina was very busy tidying up after a show, and I somehow forgot to take a photo - apologies.
Sunday June 28th Stopping for an early morning coffee in tiny Tyner ...
..almost all small shops, including the humble post office above, contain a coffee machine.
Late that afternoon I was riding past a house near Hanna when I was approached by a couple of curious women. Brenda Pauley Trafny immediately offered a stall in her barn for Lady and invited me to stay in her lovely home.
Not only that, but the next morning she accompanied us a little way on horseback..
...and sorted out a place to stay that evening at the home of farrier Glenn Martin and wife Kathy in Boone Grove who proved to be most genial hosts..
They found a corner to tie Lady in their barn and looked after me superbly.  All the best in your new home in Tennessee!

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