Today the vet gave Chico the all-clear; all he’s concerned about, given the magnitude of my intended undertaking, is Chico’s hooves getting too worn down, and his harness rubbing, and both of those would be his worries with any donkey. So, pending the results of the blood test on Thursday, Chico is the one.
With a lot of help from kind people I have a field I can put him in near Aberystwyth, a trailer I can go and get him with, a van to tow the trailer, and Dad to drive his van. I have some idea of how to transport a donkey, and what to do when we get here. The weather is looking up – the drive through the waist of Wales was emerald green and pleasant, and I burnt my forehead considerably, on surely the first possible forehead-burning day of 2013.
Some items of kit are still a bit of a problem, but there are options – one being to make the pack saddle here in Aberystwyth. It turns out that we can count a woodworker who may have seen one before, and a fellow who used to make tack amongst friends of the family. All of these things can be thought about in the morning.
So what is this nervy feeling? Wasn’t it nice to see Chico? Isn’t he the one? Don’t I by now know pretty much all I can find out about a donkey, without actually having one to look at? Isn’t it about time for this next step? What’s making me feel like a little donkey, out in the wide world, somewhat alarmed to be encountering his first huge cow, staring malevolently out from behind a hedge? Chico’s huge cow was a huge cow, and my metaphorical huge cow is… the feeling that…
BLOODY HELL, IT’S REAL. I’ve made this happen and now it’s happening, and it’s real, and I’ve made everyone agree that cow-frightened young Chico is the one, and now I just have to get on with it and walk around Wales with a donkey.