Sunday, 29 April 2012

Matriarchal Mule

Greetings Muleteers!  A very damp Callie here!  Oh dear the rain has descended upon us again.... I can't bring myself to venture out of my mule palace, it is wet, windy and cold :-(

FH and I managed a small window yesterday without rain (even though it was very windy!) to go out with My Heroine and Calm Human, we had sooo much fun, we wandered around the lanes so that I could check out the happenings in the local area, whose sheep are where, what is in the local dustbins and how much water is flowing in the drains (lots!!), I also managed to meet the 4 o'clock train which as an avid trainspotter made my day.  I've never got so close to one and FH was very pleased with me standing within a few metres of it thundering above my head - I was very exciting to see the carriages going past and tried waving with my ears!  Alas there were no more trains so we had to motor on back up the hill, when we got home and it was time to say goodbye to My Heroine I had a little 'mule moment'.  Why should I have to go home first, I wanted to carry on further, it was not time to go home to baby sitting duty yet!

Which brings me to the real subject of my post....  FH has said that I am turning in to Matriarchal Mule.  Now I'm not too averse to this title as the definition is:

1. A woman who rules a family, clan, or tribe.
2. A woman who dominates a group or an activity.
3. A highly respected woman who is a mother.

Now best not tell The Mini as I think he would certainly have something to say about numbers 1 and 2...  You see being Matriarchal Mule is all very well and good but it does come with some drawbacks.  On Saturday morning I had to babysit Ro-Land on his hike back to the mule palace, he walks soooo slowly, I had to keep stopping and starting but as FH wanted to walk us both at once I had to be extra specially good, no pulling on the rope, no picnicking and definitely no trotting, otherwise my mini friend wouldn't keep up!

The other downsides are that I am always 'on guard'  when the little ones decide to sleep I have to stand guard, they are so small that even a gust of wind might get them and as for those nasty dogs that we sometimes see well they're nearly as big as Roller Polar.

It seems that the little ones also seem to think the best place to be is by my side so I even have to share my haynet, and my stable, this morning all three of us were squashed in - we're aiming for the record of how many minis and mules you can fit in a one mule stable, theirs was open for them but no they wanted to just be with me, well can you blame them?

It is a lot to live up to, the boys are always checking out my beauty and sometimes I feel like I have two minis on my apron strings!

I am also the dispenser of scratches and massages, these boys know that I can reach the parts that they can't, sadly they can't scratch my back for me so I have to ask FH nicely to do that for me.

However...... there are plenty of good points of being Matriarchal Mule!  These two extras from Mullivers Travels are my very own gang and I have not one but two boys to flutter my eyelashes at (3 if you count MH who is very won over by my good looks!).  They're not too difficult to look after I guess, despite their size they are quietly tough and The Mini always joins in the guarding duties.  Besides it is always nice to be somewhere that you're appreciated and I sure feel like that here!  There's no place like home with your very own family :-)

Til next time muleteers, I'm going to be dreaming about some sunshine, I've heard Italy is nice at this time of year??

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Desert Animals Do Not 'Do' Downpours

Dearest muleteers I have a complaint to make and it's a very big one!  What have you all done to the weather??  Do you not know that us desert animals DO NOT DO DOWNPOURS!

For the last two days I have been most upset as I have been made to curtail my grazing activities because of this terrible weather you have ordered.  Now I have heard that most of this damp isle is in drought but really??? How can this be???  Never have I heard such a ridiculous statement!

I don't 'do' damp...

Over the last 48 hours I have had to contend with the following:

1/. Pouring rain in volumes that have no right to be seen in a country in drought!
2/. Thunder and lightning (I hide behind Dragon as she will get struck first, her ears are the highest....)
3/. Hail (ouch)
4/. Gales (it's just not right to have wind blowing up your botty... it should be the other way around, hehe)
5/. Mud glorious blooming mud (It has no place in a mule's wardrobe)
6/. A grumpy Dragon, she has even been rugged up which is unusual as she normally hates this especially as the rug is not pink!
7/. A stupidly happy Ro-Land who is oblivious to bad weather and is merrily eating all the grass that Dragon and I are too busy sheltering to eat, he is a Shetland Pony you know (yawn as he keeps telling us)

Us desert animals just don't do rain, we are not waterproof and do not possess the stupidly thick coat that Ro-Land does for just such eventualities, I am officially a rather grumpy mule today :-(

So please muleteers I implore you start doing a dance for sunshine, this poor mini mule can't take much more.....  Tonight I will be talking to FH about finding me a special little mini mule rug just for me :-)

I am dreaming of a snooze in the sun....

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Roses for Sweet Mulettas!

Rose snacks make a happy muletta!
Greetings Muleteers!  Callie here, Oh My Mule what an appalling day we have had with the most awful rain and wind, we even had thunder and lightning.  I really was not bothered though, I have to put on a brave face to look after the minis, would you believe my two boyfriends use my larger build to hide behind when the rain is lashing down?  I don't mind too much as I am the only one with a wardrobe... I have a beautiful water proof rug whereas the naughty mini ones have only their thick coats to protect them, well I am a dainty lady you know!

To cheer me up after a nasty day in the rain man human (MH) and female human (FH) turned up with some yummy mule food to warm us up from the inside, oh the joy of some nice donkey chaff and some donkey nuts finished off by a lovely piece of apple!

Don't tell anyone (especially FH as I think she is a little jealous) MH also took pity on me and brought me roses!  Well not quite but nearly...  MH is normally tasked with leading me whilst FH takes the two naughty minis, we bring up the rear of the mule train and he and I have come to an understanding, we stop every now and again for a nice snack while the minis go in front, they are a bit slow....  MH has noticed that my favourite thing to eat at the moment is the lovely yummy wild rose bushes that are beginning to grow in the lane next to our mule palace.  So as we walk along MH and I 'smash and grab' picnic.  Today I didn't even have to pick my own, he brought me roses - swoon!!  A girl could get used to this kind of treatment, wonder when FH last got roses?  We'll have to start a competition!

Sunday, 22 April 2012

What to Feed a Mule?

Greetings Muleteers!  The Mini here ;-)  FH has finally graced us with her presence and is back after a holiday in the sun (she says she needs some time away from the mud and rain occasionally, well really….!)

FH came to bring us back from our extra grazing this morning as she was muttering something about too much grass (is this ever a problem??) and risks to us long ears from laminitis.  She is regularly obsessed with our dainty hooves checking them for heat and feeling our pulses, I have to say I do get a bit bored when she’s feeling my feet, I know they’re lovely but what is all the fuss about?

So FH decided that as the grass is growing so much and we are making a mud bath out of our spring grazing that we should come home for a few days!  Now don’t tell anyone muleteers but this is always our heart’s desire and we have been puddling the non-home fields for just this reason so that she will take pity on us!

So home we went and FH promised us a mule feast!!  Yummy!  Us mules are definitely culinary connoisseurs, we enjoy the finer things in life and after a short aperitif of grass we were all gathered in for the main course!  Ro-Land thinks Callie and I are a little strange… (that’s rich coming from him) as we like to eat wood.  Now folks we have told you of our love of wood before but today we had a special treat, MH had been chopping branches down and just so happened to find us some nice ash branches that are particularly fine to strip the bark from.

So I concentrated on the bark stripping and had a jolly good time as you can see!


Dragon was a little more lady like and went for the delicate chewing approach, I’m hoping that she will leave some of the bark for me as my delicate little teeth are definitely the best at pulling off the choicest morsels.


And what did Ro-Land do?  Well he watched us with puzzlement and went to sleep, sometimes I have to remind myself that he is a short ears and hasn’t discovered the pleasures of wood yet (let’s hope he doesn’t anytime soon as then there’s more for me!!) 

So what should you feed your long ears?  Here’s my list of what we like:

1.              Not too much grass otherwise our feet get sore… when we are allowed grass FH says it must be scrubby and not fertilized (she is very particular!!)
2.              Straw (preferably barley) should be available at all times in case we need a little something to chew on, you humans may think it plain but we love it!
3.              Safe branches and twigs to munch on please
4.              A regular trip out to munch on the hedgerows, we love cleavers, cow parsley, primroses, dandelions, blackberry, hawthorn and wild rose.
5.              The occasional treat of a pear, apple, carrot or best of all a lovely banana peel!

Now if only I could work out how to climb trees like Catanian I would be able to munch all day!  Til next time muleteers and remember always eat high fibre first!

Thursday, 19 April 2012

House Sitting....

Greetings Muleteers!  Can you believe it the humans have gone and left us for a few days to go on holiday.  They have left us in charge of not one but two humans! We have Aunty Di pandering to our every mulish whim and Granny has come to stay to look after the other four legs.  These humans are both lovely and we like having them to play with, Aunty Di is very taken with my long ears and is always very calm and patient with us, she even tells The Mini to behave when he's naughty, hehe!  Granny has her work cut out with the naughty dogs and Catanian and is also house sitting.... now this is strange muleteers because I'm sure FH told me I was in charge of the house.  She even took me to peer in through the front door so that I could see where everything was and check that Granny is behaving.... if there's any mud on that floor I'll know about it!

I have made sure that I've met the neighbours and have checked out the state of the front garden so that if any weeding is required I'll be right there!  I have to say you humans are very untidy in your homes, there is all that clutter and a surprising lack of fresh air.  Give me the stars above my ears anyday, I think FH feels the same way as I'm sure she spends more time with us than in the house, I hope she hasn't got designs on my mule palace though, it's bad enough having to share it with smelly boys, I don't mind Catanian though :-)  FH says she'll be home before we know it and then there'll be ample opportunity for some work - yippeee

So muleteers watch out because this mule is on the prowl, I will be defending the house and Aunty and Granny from marauding intruders.  One alarm call from this mule will have the whole neighbourhood braybourhood out to see what's occurring.

Til next time muleteers, I promise we'll be good mules until FH is back, we might have to make our own fun though!  Now where is FHs pink paint kept, I know it must be here somewhere....

Monday, 16 April 2012

Happy Birthday to Me!

Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday to Me, Happy Birthday Dear Roller Polar, Happy Birthday to Me!

Yes muleteers today is my birthday and I am a whole 5 years old :-) My wants in life are simple... I have no requirement for birthday cake, balloons, the latest hip hop music or a gift wrapped pair of Nike trainers (although I would like a sniff of a welly boot...mmmm) I will be celebrating the occasion by having a play with The Mini, I'm hoping for a smooch from Dragon, some sunshine to bathe in and extra grass, sounds like a perfect pony day.

FH says that she can't believe I'm 5 already!  She did tell me recently that someone had asked if I was really old as I was so quiet and bombproof, FH chuckled and said it gave her great pleasure to tell them I'm only a baby really... I'm not so sure.... I may have grey hairs but these are all part of the style folks!

Birthday's always make you think about life and you're often told to make a wish when you blow out your candles.  Today I am wishing to stay here forever with my little gang.  They're not so bad really but don't tell them that.  The Mini is so naughty and likes to terrorise me by laying those oversized mule ears of his back and charging full pelt in to my bottom, he's like a steam train shunting the carriages in to position.  When he thinks no one's looking though he is my bestest pal, we are always grazing next to each other and we are just the right height to give each other a good scratch, we also share our stable as it would be lonely on our own and we don't like to be parted, FH says we are like a married couple.  I have seen her and MH and it may be true... they like to bicker, steal each others food (or beer in MH's case), don't care if the other has sticky up hair and seem to just be happy silently in each other's company (this is not often because FH just chatters non stop, her and The Mini are too alike).  MH and I know the secret though..... nod and agree, dodge the steaming train and when no one's looking give them a loving scratch behind the ears!

As for Dragon, what can I say!!  She is a new arrival since my last birthday and she has brought a certain something to the gang, well firstly she's a girl and as all boys know they smell ;-)  Hope she doesn't read this.....  No really she is a nice new friend who keeps The Mini at bay for most of the time (he has two of us to sort out now hehe), she does have her moments though when she's feeling fruity and can't get enough of my handsomeness, it would appear that she has a thing for short ears....  The other great thing about Dragon is that she is so brave!  She keeps an eye out for us minis and protects us from dogs that might like to hurt us or tractors that come past us in the lane, her huge presence is a big comfort when you're as small as us.

So there's my birthday wish, I'd like to stay with the gang please!  FH says that's the easiest wish to grant so that means I can go and dream of the next year's worth of adventures... 'til next muleteers - Roller xxx

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Easter Mule Rides and Visits

Greetings Muleteers!  Callie here :-) Well what a busy time we are having this weekend.  Talk about popular!  We have had lots of visitors and have been getting out and about enjoying ourselves.

Yesterday we had a visit from the human that I used to own, she came a very long way to see me.  I was very pleased to see her but had to show her that I was not amused by her match making skills (she could have found me some boyfriends with longer legs!) so I pretended not to see her.... but then she whistled and I couldn't help but notice!  We spent some lovely time catching up with happenings back in my previous home and she told me all about what Indy my old best pal was up to, sounds like he's doing brilliantly!
We went out for a walk with FH and I showed off my new surroundings to my training human.  She seemed pleased to be out with me and I enjoyed showing off some of the tricks I've been practicing with FH.
Before I knew it we were back home and The Mini decided it was his turn for attention, he always has to be No. 1  Well a girl had eating to get on with so I left him to it, he is such a terrible flirt, what a ladies man!
The time came when I had to say goodbye to training human, I felt a little confused, I really had missed her but I do also love my new mini friends and the mule moor that lies on the doorstep, maybe I could stay a while longer?  There was mention of Indy being brought for a ride, now that would be fun to show him around too!

I had a long snooze in the sun then and pondered all of the fun we'd had and looked forward to tomorrow..

Well Easter Sunday came quickly, FH was up earlier than usual (she is such a layabout....) and she said the words I long to hear...we were going out for a ride! Yippppeeee!

So she climbed aboard, we have mastered the mounting situation and I now stand still as a rock.  She has learnt to leap daintily so I too can match her with my standing still.

Catanian wanted to come too but FH told her no as we were going the way with the cat eating motor engines...
Then we were off!  We went on down some steep hills, FH was very pleased because my saddle didn't slip an inch, this is great as mules and saddles are a hard thing to sort out.  It stayed it place which is great cos we don't want FH to fall off.  We had some lovely trots up the lane, I like trotting, my dainty little mule hooves make a lovely sound.  When we stopped trotting I had what FH calls a 'mule moment' and decided that I wanted to go and talk to the ponies that we had just passed.  Well FH had other ideas and there was a stand off... literally!  So we stood and discussed the issue for a while and I got bored so I did as FH wanted.
We carried on up to the moor entrance to admire the view, I can see for miles and miles and can't wait for my next expedition up there with Breeze.

All good things must come to an end muleteers and we had to go home eventually because FH has chores to do, that sounds very boring.  Apparently Granny (supplier of treats and scratches and one of our very favourite people) and Uncle Human (ditto) are visiting later so we need to practice our best hungry mule poses ;-)

Friday, 6 April 2012

How The Donkey (and Mule) Got It's Cross and Other Stories....

Greeting Muleteers!  Today is Good Friday and that means that our humans have the day off work.  This has been a good idea because we have had them all day to play with :-)   Before we tell you about our day we thought you would be interested to hear the story that female human (FH) told us about our father the donkey today.

Donkeys have a magnificent cross
Apparently the donkey is a very religious animal who was much appreciated by a figure that many people worship called Jesus (a smart man we think!)  The story goes that sadly many, many years ago people decided they didn't like Jesus so they sentenced him to death by crucifying him on a cross.  We mules cannot understand you humans sometimes, this is just too awful to imagine.....  When this happened Jesus was made to carry the cross upon which he would be crucified through the streets and up a hill for miles and miles.  His longtime friend the donkey who had been with him since his birth was there with him while all around him people jeered and laughed.  The donkey being a faithful servant and all round lovely creature told Jesus that he couldn't manage the cross all on his own and said that he would bear it for him as he was used to heavy loads and jeering people.  We mules and donkeys know when people need our help so this is naturally what the donkey would do.

Sadly Jesus said the cross was his to to bear and that the donkey his humble companion would understand this like no other creature as they bear loads and beatings like no other animals that serve humans.  Jesus died that day but the donkey and his dedication and loyalty were remembered.  From that day donkeys and most mules bear the mark of the cross on their back to remind those that may jeer and laugh at them that they were the one there when Jesus needed them and they are the only animal to bear this sacred mark.

Well muleteers we think it is a lovely story, who knows if it's true but we know it sounds like it could be! We mules both have crosses on our backs, Callie's is magnificent and huge so she must be extra holy!

We enjoyed listening to FH's story, she was telling it when we were walking home for the weekend!  Yes we're back at the ranch for the weekend, the grass has grown loads since we left a month ago so FH wouldn't let us eat too much of it so it's back to the straw....:-(

It's been a fun filled day!  Here is a photo diary of what we've been up to!
First we had a walk home with the humans, Ro-Land's Little legs couldn't keep up so he came separately!

 Smiley human came to play with Callie, she went out for a ride which was enjoyed by everyone!

We have been reunited with Catanian too who is a little upset because she has had to give up sleeping in our beds! To make her happy FH consoled her with lots of cuddles, we wish we could be lap mules...

The Mini took tea in the garden with man human, he stopped by for a gentle bottom scratch, whenever there's an opportunity he's there.

Ro-Land had a pedicure as his little hooves had some little chips, nothing serious but we need to keep them in good form until lovely foot trimmer man can get here to do the proper job!

Ro-Land helps with his pedicure

Well muleteers we're off for a snooze.  Enjoy your weekend, we'll be back again soon!  Callie has a special visitor coming tomorrow, she's very human is coming to see her... we hope she's happy to see us :-)

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Primroses, Lambs and Damp Ears

Greetings Muleteers!  The Mini here.  Honestly what does a mule have to do to get the keyboard around here?  I've had to tackle 'My Little Pony' (hmmm more like 'My Little Lacking in the Mulificent Ears Pony') and then had to smooch Dragon for the privilege to talk to you all.

We have been having the most lovely weather over the last few days and I've been enjoying snoozing in the sun, bray neighing at the passing short ears (whose humans look petrified much of the time, I'm not a monster!) and munching the fresh grass.  The primroses and bluebells are out but there is a slight disadvantage.... sheep, well lambs to be precise.

We have recently had some lambs put in to the field next door with their mums who are well let's say NOISY!!!  They keep me awake all night with their 'I'm lost...AGAIN' bleats and tonight one had the stupidity to end up on the wrong side of the fence.  It was soooo funny watching human run around shouting here lamby lamby, she's a loony.  There I was hoping to get a good night's sleep when guess what?  There appeared more neighbours!  This time they are bigger than me and secretly I'm not sure about them (don't tell Dragon though as I'm supposed to protect her), there are some new cows across the way or steers as human calls them and my goodness they smell bad!  They are unbothered by my brays and even seem to find me interesting, I must investigate further when I pluck up the courage.

So with all of this disturbance to my beauty handsome sleep imagine my true desolation when it started to rain..... my poor mulificent ears got wet and I was close to melt down.  But then human cheered me up, she pulled my favourite out of her pocket, yes folks you've got it - a banana peel!

I let her know how very happy I was by making some cute faces for her, she approved as she snapped away just for you :-)

Well muleteers have a lovely easter break, I hear that lamb is traditionally eaten? Hmmmm now then I couldn't eat a whole one.... oh dear human's coming and she doesn't look impressed with my joke.... 'til next time muleteers and don't eat all the chocolate at once ;-)

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Moor Mule

Greetings muleteers! Apologies for our silence over the last few days, human has been on holiday so decided that it was our turn to work, yippee!

My week began with a mammoth outing for some playtime with Breeze (My Heroine)and her human (aka Calm Human). We went for a long walk and ride to the school which is nearly 3 miles away, my human was puffed even though I did carry her part of the way.

I love going out with My Heroine and Calm Human, the humans can chatter to each other about disappointingly strange humans who do the oddest things... Breeze and I listen with interest about things like draw reins, laminitis, boredom and dressage competitions. We're always so glad we don't own humans like that!  On the way to the school we passed a fire breathing angle grinder, two tractors and lots of people in cars who seemed to be looking at something in the sky? When we got to the school I was an extra good muletta for the first 20 minutes, yes of course I know how to turn and stop... After a while I got rather bored and let human know by swishing a lot.

Breeze and I train the humans...
Alas my training class with her was over, but wait what's this? Human is getting off me and on to Breeze! Now I'm not the jealous type but....? I watched a little pensively with my ears drooping and then got more and more surprised. Breeze was dancing for human, apparently it's called shoulder in and counter bending, one day maybe I can try this? Calm human and My Heroine have been learning to dance and my human was learning a few steps. One day......

On the way home I had to investigate some particularly troublesome looking cattle who were giving me the hard stare, I wasn't having it! I strode over and put them in their place, Mules (and their friends) Rule, OK?
Naughty cattle need putting in their place.
No sooner had we got back and I'd had a snooze and a nibble than we were back at it the next day!  Little did I know the adventure we were going on:-)

Again we walked up to meet Calm Human and My Heroine. It happened again.... Lots of people kept stopping in their cars and staring at the sky, then I realised they were looking at my mulificent ears! Several cars stopped to enquire after my majestic beauty. Human says we'll have to leave an extra half hour each ride for my head expanding fan club comments.

After a little human training we were off for a ride on the moor. More what? I asked Breeze. Breeze said it was The Moor and if I was a good long ears I might get to play there a lot this summer, sounds fun. We were off, now there are some doubters who think I will struggle to keep up with my longer legged friends, hmphh we'll show them. I may have shorter legs but trust me they go fast and at one stage even Breeze had to step it up to keep up with me ;-)

We came across more tractors, a big bonfire and two sleepy bulls, no problems! Then time for the best bit... The Moor. Human pointed me at a steep slope with a little path that was perfect for my dainty hooves and told me to go for it!
That looks like a mule track to me!
So I did! She held the saddle horn and pretended to direct, I just did what us mules do best, I conquered that slope.  Breeze encouraged me from behind and we were suddenly up high. The Moor is a magical mule playground with hills, space and views for miles. Sadly it was all over too quickly and we had to turn for home :-( human says we can play more soon, she whispered to me that taking her very own long ears on The Moor is the fulfilment of a life's ambition, but why stop there?

So muleteers I'm thinking of a new name for myself.... I am Moor Mule!