Love and marriage might go together like a horse and carriage, but when it comes to country living it’s dust and dirt that have the perfect marriage. And to be honest, the horses (and their carriage) love it!
Living in the country simply comes with a lot of dust and dirt, and if you want to keep your sanity, you just have to get over it. I remember when I used to visit folks who had horses and barns (long before my horse days). We would walk out into the barn and everything would be covered in a thin layer of dust, and I used to think, “Sheesh, don’t they ever clean this place?” To all of you, I am deeply sorry.
Having lived the country life for three years now, I have finally given in to the dust and the dirt. I mean, you can spend your days with brooms, dust pans, hoses, and my favorite, the leaf blower, or you can spend your days hugging the neck of your horse, brushing manes, and sitting on the porch. Frankly, the latter appeals to me a whole lot more.
To be fair, I’ve never loved cleaning, but I do my best. I grew up in a house that could pretty much pass the white glove test at any time. My mom’s mortal enemy is dust, and it still is today. In fact, we have a long running family joke about the fancy formal living room coffee tables circa 1974 that were shellacked to a high sheen (say “amen” if you know what I mean). Dusting them was the bane of my existence. When my mom finally upgraded her furniture several years back, she quipped, “You sure you don’t want these tables?”
I was quick to respond with “Are you kidding me? Do you know how many hours of therapy those tables cost me?”
And not only do you just have to deal with it, I actually find myself spending cold hard cash on dirt, well sand, but you get the gist. Where we live, when it rains our dirt turns to gumbo. That thick, gloppy mess that will turn a girl’s boots into 10-pound weights, that is if you are lucky enough not to have them sucked off of your feet.
To help with this lovely little dilemma, we’ve brought in truck loads of sand to mix around the horse stalls and work area. And in case you are wondering, dirt ain’t cheap, which you are gently reminded of on hot dusty days as your precious sand is blowing around. The wind whispers “cha-ching” in your ear as the dirt you actually want slowly slips away. So while some girls get to dream of spending money on new sofas, I dream of sandy soil. My what has happened to me?
And if not for the dirt and dust that just blow around, the animals will make sure you have plenty of extra. For example, Nightmare the barn cat, loves to roll in the dirt and sand and turn his shiny black coat into a lovely shade of tan. Sweet Suzy Q loves nothing more than a good rain to roll around in the mud and fill up her beautiful mane with mud clumps, resulting in bath time, which is a whole other story altogether.
So there you have it. Country life is filled with sand, mud, and dust. But when a big old dusty horse slobbers all over your shoulder and leaves a dirt print on your favorite T-shirt, you think dirt is just about the best thing you’ve ever seen.