Esmerelda is Exclusive’s daughter. She was born on the day of the Triple Header (in 2011, which makes her a three year old). Three foals in ten hours. What actually happened that day was that we were still dealing with Freckles and her new colt, and neglected to check on Exclusive for a couple of hours in her paddock. When I went out to have a look, there was Exclusive, lying down in the shelter with a newborn filly walking around her. Esmerelda was up before her mom, bright, cheerful, athletic, and smart from the moment she was born.
I ran for the barn to get Linda. I think Linda nearly passed out from shock when I charged in and banged on the wall to get her down from upstairs where she was watching the foal cam. We ran back out with Linda panicking totally about how we would get this newborn in through the snowdrifts and muck and ice. “No problem!” I told her. She hadn’t seen that sprightly little filly yet. Exclusive was up by then and Esmerelda was trying to figure out the nursing thing. Linda led Exclusive and I wrapped my arms around Esmerelda and guided her in the right direction. She trotted along like she was on a mission. “Come ON! Let’s get in that barn so I can get back to that milk bar!!”
Esmerelda is still cheerful and smart. She’s been no trouble to start, and both the Boss and Anastasija have been riding her in the arena with no fuss. She does have opinions, and a strong sense of her own importance. But she’s not the least bit exciteable. Although the two boys, Reno and Al, were sent off to a training centre to get a bit of legging up and schooling before going to the track, Esmerelda really isn’t that complicated.
Monday morning I went in to work with my truck and trailer, and we brought Esmerelda out. She’s never seen a horse trailer before. But I did do some ground work with her, teaching her to walk on plywood, through poles, over obstacles etc. Basically Esmerelda will do anything I ask. So long as I have food to offer in return.
She inspected the trailer ramp. Tapped it with her toe. I gave her a cookie. Okay. She slapped her foot on the ramp and looked at me expectantly. I gave her another cookie. She put her other front foot on. And yep… another cookie. “Good deal!” she told me, and walked on. No fuss at all.
Off we went to a training centre, to pick up Silent Flourish. That’s a new filly that Linda bought a couple of weeks ago. By Silent Name, one of the Adena stallions. He’s been producing some decent runners lately, and the filly seems like a nice sort. She also loaded well, and we carried on down to Woodbine. Esmerelda had been a bit restless before we picked up the second filly. But with company she settled down and rode quietly the rest of the way.
The two fillies unloaded cautiously but politely and other than a few snorts walked directly into their new living quarters. Word is that they are both doing very well and have settled into the routine easily.
Since I was there anyway, I was able to take some pictures of my kids….