Jasper peeks his nose over the partition to his stall and calls. His whiskers tremble and search, I see the fog of his breath form a question.
“When will you play with me?”
I’m frozen all over. It’s supposedly -37 to -40 outside. The horse urine here is so frozen it’s icy and stuck to the stall floors, the poop is frozen to the floor of the stall in places, and the heated water buckets have an inch or so of ice on the top of them. Those are just the buckets–not even the tanks. The tanks only have about an inch of open water around the heater itself. The horses are begging to stay in the barn and don’t want to leave it. Everyone who owns one has a heavy blanket on, and the horses are covered in icicles from their toes to hip/elbow; then nose to shoulders, and all over their tails. It’s pathetic, really.
So, Jasper, my answer is this: I desperately want to play with you. You have no idea. If it were 50 degrees out there, we’d play all day. If it were 30 degrees out there, we’d play for hours.
But it’s -40.
So, buddy, you’re gonna have to be patient with me, and wait for another day.