Two years ago, a babe missed my birthday by hours – arriving on the left side of the day. This year, it was just a few hours on the right side. No matter, it still was a significant day, a better one to arrive in fact.
I was rushing off to town to get stuff for the big WINGS picnic. I was already in my car, backing up, when I noticed that Lani was standing at the fence looking at me. That wouldn’t be a red flag to anyone else. I knew instantly that something was up; Lani would not be standing alone, trying to get my attention. She and Victoria are inseparable – you don’t see one without the other being five feet away.
The two fields are very large, but when I climbed the fence, instinct took me right to Victoria. She was laying in the coolness of the shelter – not a big surprise, other than she was doing it without Lani. I had just checked her a day or so earlier, so I wasn’t expecting to see a baby, and sure enough – there wasn’t one. Still strange for her to be alone, again, instinct took me in for a closer look. When she stood up, there was afterbirth still connected.
‘Oh no’, I thought – ‘She’s lost her baby.’ Of course I couldn’t leave it lay somewhere – I’d have to find it. The fields are big and the grass is as tall as the donkeys in most places. A needle in a haystack to find a wee donkey laying down. Victoria though, looked like she was on a mission so I followed her. And there it was – way off in the corner, a tiny little foal stumbling around. I was shocked that she would be alive - it was unheard of for a mother to go off and leave her babe. My guess is that it was just too hot for Victoria and she needed to get somewhere cool to finish the birth process.
I blessed my lucky stars that I listened to that inner voice that made me question why Lani was alone. That tiny wee baby would not have survived in the heat of the day, she was already seeming weak when I scooped her up and carried her to the barn. Victoria followed close, and Lani just inches behind that – there was no way we were going through that gate without her.
By the time the gals arrived for our WINGS picnic, the baby was strong and looked older than the six hours that she was. I announced a ‘surprise’ and they followed me to the barn. There they met the newest gal to join our WINGS group … a mascot of sorts. There’s been a discussion on the Facebook group page about what we’re going to call her. It seems that the name that is garnering the most positive response is Maxi. Maxi with WINGS.
Today she is running around, hopping and kicking. But then she laid down in my lap and went to sleep. She’s got a huge amount of personality already – spunky and feisty, yet gentle and calm. She’s one of US for sure.