Monday, August 3, 2015

A "Wild Horses" Adventure for my WILD Year

wall of Marguerite Henry books
at Chincoteague Museum
Back in January I selected "wild" as my One Little Word for 2015. This whole year so far I've really been focused on "returning to a natural state." This has meant a lot of time alone (thinking, pondering, allowing myself to be the quiet, introverted soul I am) as well as time adventuring and trying new things.

This past week I was able to both adventure and return to my natural state when I visited with two of my writing friends the islands of Chincoteague and Assateague for the annual Pony Penning Week. This is something I've wanted to do ever since wee horse-loving me read the books by Maguerite Henry. How many times over the years have I dreamed myself on those islands?! And this year, I DID IT.

Not only were we able to get up close and personal with the ponies in their pens (awaiting the annual Pony Swim), we also got to see one lone stallion Rainbow Warrior who by chance or firemen's choice (not sure which), was left on the island.

Here are some friends feasting on hay. One thing I learned was that the ponies' bloated look is due to the vast amount of salt in their diets. They drink twice as much water as regular ponies to help compensate!

...a view through the slats of one of the foals to be auctioned off. (No, I didn't buy one! But that was a dream of mine when I was younger!)

If I had bought one, it might have been this one: (by the way, see that "12" brand on her mother's flank? That indicates the year she first came in for roundup.)

And here is Rainbow Warrior, in all his solitary glory... story is (according to Captain Dan, who took us on an amazing sunset cruise around the island), he lost his mares to a younger male, and since then, he's been on his own. He looked pretty content with no worries about other stallions while all the others were penned up. :) Thanks, Sheila, for the great pic!

For a story about what's happening in the next picture, visit Pat Weaver's blog!

One of the treasures I brought home from the trip was this gorgeous photography book IN THE HERD by Jayne M. Silberman (who signed a book for me!). What a gorgeous keepsake. And now I shall write some pony poems....

And finally, here we all are in front of the paddocks. Great trip, ladies. Thank you!


  1. How exciting! And there you are with cowboy boots and everything! (When I am in Nashville, I long for them, but I don't have occasion to wear them, by and large.)

  2. I've always loved horses. Had to wait until my adult years to own a horse, and then at one point we had 10, including a stallion. I'd buy horse scented perfume if they sold it! Love that hay and horsey barn smell! Lucky you to be able to see the Pony Penning.

  3. I love your thoughts on the trip Irene... in truth... I think the visit to the islands was the best we have done and that is saying tons because we have been on many adventures. Thanks for the shout out too

  4. What I love about your summer, Irene, is that you're fulfilling goals that you've had for a while. Good for you. Love the pictures. LATHAM POWER!

  5. What I love about your summer, Irene, is that you're fulfilling goals that you've had for a while. Good for you. Love the pictures. LATHAM POWER!

  6. I just found this website! Wow, I'm so glad you got to go to Chincoteague! I wanted to tell you about that baby you mentioned above as the one you would have taken home if you could have! :)
    My family bought her mother (the mare with the 12 on her butt) in 2012 as our first Buyback, and the baby you loved was her first baby, who by a miracle was also a buyback me and my sister won at the auction and named Dreamer's Faith. Thank you for putting this picture on your website, new pictures of her are hard to come by since she passed away in September 2015. Love your adventures!


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