1. A horse that we've had since I was six died at the end of October. He was 31. Gentle, kind, and with an excellent sense of humour. He could no longer eat hay or grass because his teeth were in such bad shape he couldn't chew it and it would fall out of his mouth in wet wads. He was my dad's horse and I can't imagine how hard this whole thing must be for my dad.
I'll be in my 50s before I've lived as much life without Rocky as I have lived with him.
For the past couple of years, every time we would go back home and visit, I'd tear up when it came time to say good bye because I knew he might not make it through the winter.
As a kid, my dad would read me a book, and then when it was time for bed he'd rub my back and tell me story. Sometimes they were about when he was young, other times were stories he insisted that our animals told him. This is one of them. When I was about eight years old, my dad kept Rocky at a barn where I also took riding lessons. One day during my riding lesson, my dad took Rocky for a trail ride. Rocky loved to go on rides, out of all our horses he was most excited when his saddle came out and he was always keen to go. But during this lesson, I was thrown pretty badly, dirt coated the inside of my mouth and I had a concussion. My dad says at some moment on the ride, Rocky stopped wanting to go any further from the barn – unusual for him – and was really pushy about heading back. Like he knew something was wrong, like he knew I was hurt. He always felt like the sweet older four legged brother. And I'll miss him so. The barn yard certainly will never be the same.
Image: Rocky and I, September 2012 | Kyle Hepp.
2. Two weeks ago, Inspector Climate and I put in an offer on a house in Tasmania. And just this past week, we got a building inspection done on the house. It failed. And now, we are going to retract our offer completely. To explain what was wrong with it could take days, suffice to say, the list was long and the cost of fixing it would be enormous. And it is ... devastating. We were talking about where we'd put furniture and what fruit trees we'd add to the orchard. The kitchen was absolutely stunning and I already had plans to add a claw-footed tub. And I know that there will be another place out there, that this one clearly wasn't meant to be, etc. etc. But the idea of starting over again, finding new homes to love is daunting.
3. Today is Inspector Climate and my four year 'getting married' anniversary. It seems almost insane that it has been four years. We are not doing anything to celebrate at the moment, I had plans to go a fancy restaurant when I thought we'd be home owners as well, but we don't really feel like celebrating at the moment. When we first started seeing each other I remember every month was a milestone. "Happy four month anniversary", "Happy seven month anniversary" – we'd say to each other. And now, we've been married for four years. FOUR YEARS.