The warm spring sun in May rarely shines for all the rain. The meadows and pastures are green and thick. When the sun shines it is heaven and I remember wondering how I would face the challenge of keeping Star and Vanilla well cared for and get my dye buckets ready for the summer dyeing season. Two passions I love conflicting with one another. I had visions of happily riding Star in the woodland trails climbing the hills and crossing the brooks to arrive in open meadows with spectacular views of the mountains. I also saw myself waxing new batik in my studio and happily bringing them outdoors to dye. It is always a surprise as I pull my batik cotton fabric out of the dye bucket. The dyes filling in the spider crackling that is part of the character of wax, of the ancient batik process.

This is the Woodland Smiles silk painted scarf.

But that day in mid-May when Star got frightened and I flew off her on the stony trail in the woods changed all that.

I knew my back and pelvis were damaged immediately and little Star galloped off to home. Fortunately, my phone was able to connect with my neighbor Monika and she answered before the call got dropped. I was on the edge of a dead zone. I slowly walked and sometimes crawled back home, fortunately, most of the walk was downhill. Star had found herself in the big meadow next to our house and Monika got her unsaddled and bridled and set for the night.

I made my way to the house and announced to Dick what had happened. The next day I was off to the hospital with my good friend Joanne who stayed with me for the seven hours before I was released. Many nerves in my crumbling back were pinched and I could barely walk. No riding and no batik for now.

I am grateful I live in a gorgeous spot and just sitting outdoors this time of year is something to be grateful for. I needed lots of help at first bringing home appreciation for those who are permanently disabled or old and will not return to an active life. Star and Vanilla have gotten good care and I am now, July 5th beginning to be back out with Star brushing her, putting on fly protection and lunging her a little bit. Vanilla has been a bit resentful at me not caring for him and has gotten spitty as some llamas do. He is slow to forgive but has begun.

My studio is filled with unfinished batik and silk scarves and I am ready to begin some work on them. At first, even sitting at the computer was very painful and blocked my efforts to blog and send out my newsletters. Bending over my waxing table impossible and I still will need help with getting my dye buckets set up. But there is hope! I still have a long way to go. I am lucky this happened in warm weather when the water goes out by a hose instead of being carried by hand through the snow and ice and the manure is mostly spread off in the pastures by the animals and not needing lots of cleaning in the stalls. The July sun is hot and shinning and at last, I am slowly climbing to the hilltop above my house to enjoy the light of summer.

The bee balm is starting to bloom. It seems to have a special glory on the Fourth of July.

Thank you for bearing with me. I have been able to get some new work out to sell from batik I finished before this accident.

I am grateful for having such good customers…

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