Monday, November 18, 2013

Sunday Drive

Yesterday Gregg and I went for a Sunday Drive.  We headed over to Middleburg for a late lunch at our favorite sandwich shop, and later  turned left on the road that leads to The Plains.  Both picturesque, quaint towns but I didn't take any photos.  I did, however, spot a lovely sculpture of a horse on the turn. When we read the sign we saw that it was the National Sporting Library and Museum.  Their link is here, and they have a Facebook page which you can look at here.  

At first I saw a beautiful statue but then a comment from TexWis Girl at the Run-A-Round Ranch made me think twice, and I decided to learn more about this statue.  I found the following information here, and it is a very somber and symbolic sculpture.  It is in fact a war memorial.  

"The monument in front of the National Sporting Library and Museum depicts in heartbreaking fashion the result of horses being pressed beyond their capabilities.  Note the gaunt condition of this horse.  The empty sword scabbard signifies that his rider has fallen in combat.  Over 1,500,000 horses and mules died in the Civil War."

I learned something important today and thank you TexWis Girl for making me see the real meaning of this sculpture.

As we drove on we saw more deer than normal but it was getting late in the day and I think the overcast sky had brought them out.  It was dreary weather-wise and it drizzled steadily, but we decided to stop at the gate entrance just past Half Way (that's the name of the community), where we usually see lots of goats and a solitary Mediterranean donkey.  They weren't as close as they normally are, so no real good pictures.  We observed one interesting interaction between the donkey and a younger goat.

There was the donkey, doing what donkeys love to do, chomp on tasty grass.

He looked up as you can see in the above photo, and then went back to eating.  My attention turned to the metal cut-out of the goat on my right.  It wasn't there on our last visit a few months ago.

Again a little grainy but I then saw a young goat eating out of what looked like an enormous pumpkin.  He was looking towards to the rest of his tribe/trip.  What do you call a group of goats? A tribe or a trip.  Go here to see other interesting group names.

He decided it was time to join his family, maybe its mother had called him, who knows.  As he was walking past the donkey, something odd happened.  

The donkey's ears flattened and he started chasing the goat.  

That young goat took off as fast as his little legs could carry him.....

When the goat rejoined his 'tribe', the donkey stopped and they were joined by a little white dog who saw us looking from over the gate, and barked very loudly at us.  We thought it was time for us to move on.  Good little guard dog, for such a tiny body he sure had a very loud bark.

Something else I learned today, a group of goats is called a tribe or a trip, and I didn't know a donkey could move that fast!  Why do you think he behaved that way?  Normally whenever we have seen both donkey and goats, they have been quite amicable towards each other.  

One quick stop at Wegmans to replenish a few groceries, and we headed home.