I’ll get to the whole travelogue about going from Chicago to Fort Wayne to Findlay and then to Little Valley, NY where I am right now.
But I had to write about this tonight.
So the place I’m staying at was another place I found on the HipCamp app. The photos looked amazing. The photos were deceiving. The place looks disorganized and rundown. I think it has great potential if they put a little spit polish on things.
I pulled into the driveway. The instructions said to go up to the barn but I wasn’t sure I would be able to turn around if I had to so I just parked in the driveway. I messaged the host through the app and waited.
Immediately, a ferocious Corgi came running around to protect her property and ask for belly rubs.
Her little barks were terrifying so I acquiesced, got out of the car and gave in to her demands. Almost immediately, another Corgi joined her. This one was older and obviously losing the use of her back legs. But that didn’t stop her. She dragged herself easily all over, the other Corgi following her and cuddling her when she stopped moving around.
I couldn’t find any humans so I went up to the barn door. A teeny little kitten came out to join the welcoming committee. So sweet! Immediately attached itself to my ankles, crying for me to pick it up. Of course I did.
Then I discovered a beautiful Siamese cat, who was obviously the mama cat. She, too, begged for belly rubs.
A couple of roosters and something that looked like a white peacock joined the menagerie.
It was quite the greeting.
But still no humans.
I found the host’s phone number on the app and called. She said she ran out for a minute but gave me instructions – turn out and go across the street, follow the driveway around and pick a spot.
I tried to turn the trailer around but there just wasn’t enough room. I finally ended up carefully backing down the driveway and out into the road. Didn’t take me as long as I thought it would. I was actually proud of how well I managed to back up. I’m getting much better at it.
I followed the directions, kind of parked then got out to check out the area to decide if I liked where I had parked. The host’s mom came over, saying that the host would be by shortly but asked her to get me settled.
After chatting with her a bit, I moved the trailer over by a small pond.
Oh, I think I forgot to mention that this was a horse farm?
I could see horses way over at the other end of the meadow beyond the pond. She mentioned that the horses might come over and drink from the pond. They had put up an electric fence so the horses won’t come over into the camping area. It’s not a scary fence – just a single line of wire so I’m sure it’s not a terrible electric fence.
She showed me a few other things and then left me to get set up.
Indy, of course, came leaping out of the trailer once it was set up, wanting to explore everything. Then he heard the horses. He stood for the longest time, trying to figure out what that noise was.
I let Indy explore for a bit then shoved him into the trailer so I could try to fix the leaks in the trailer. I had picked up some sealant and spent a bit of time (hopefully) sealing the spots that had leaked. I still covered the trailer with the tarp because the forecast is for tons of rain.
I finished and sat down at the picnic table.
That’s when the horses came.
At first, they still sort of hung out a bit away but then one came down to drink out of the pond. Then another came and joined that one. Then another. Less than twenty feet away from me.
And they were beautiful. They looked up at me then went back to drinking.
These three finished and over the course of the next hour, several others came down to drink as well.
It’s one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. Several drank and then ran up the bank and frolicked with their friends.
Then one came around the pond towards me. She (he?) looked me right in the eyes so I came up to her. She lifted her head as I carefully reached my hand over the “fence”, wanting to make sure she – or I – did not get shocked. She let me rub her nose then went back to what she was doing.
I watched them a bit more, then they went back to the far side of the meadow. I figured that was it – and that was enough.
I made a quick salad for dinner, wrapped up the galley and sat inside to eat. It started raining a bit, so I figured I was in for the night.
But then the rain let up. I was still inside when I noticed something out of the corner of my eye through my window in the door.
It was a big beautiful white horse with brown markings. It had come over to my side of the pond.
Along with half of his buddies.
I got out of the trailer, overwhelmed to find four or five of the horses RIGHT THERE. My good camera’s battery was dead so I only had my phone. I grabbed that and started taking pictures. It seemed like the horses were posing for me. They’d stop, look in my direction, I’d take a photo, and they’d go back to what they were doing.
One would pose and then move on. Then another would take its place, pause, then move on. It was like a parade of horses.
It was absolutely the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.
I just stood there and cried.
No matter what’s gone wrong on this trip or what’s gone right on this trip, this is what I will remember for the rest of my life. I had hoped to have incredible experiences during this adventure but to have a parade of horses less than ten feet away from me was not something I would have ever imagined happening.
I couldn’t stop crying. They were so quiet and calm, gorgeous. I can’t find the words to describe it. It was like they were sharing something with me, knowing it was something special.
Eventually, they finished posing for me, returning to their pasture. I’m so glad the rain held off long enough for the horses and me to have this moment. It’s supposed to rain all day tomorrow so I’m not sure another moment like this will come again.
In that moment, I couldn’t help but think about all the people who got me here, got me on this trip. How much love and belief and encouragement made sure that this trailer got built, that I got the car that I needed, and that Indy and I would be safe along the way. This might have been a moment only for me, but in that moment, I felt everyone who had taken this journey with me.
Without your faith, without your love, without your belief that I could actually pull this ridiculous insane trip off, I would never have had the opportunity to share this special moment with these incredible animals.
And just know, I can never thank all of you enough for making sure I got here to have that moment.
I can only hope there are more of those moments to come.