Winter is an interesting season here in Vermont. The weather changes so quickly until it doesn’t. We had a solid ten days of excruciating cold and then we had 60 degrees and rain. My horse, Kate, boards for the winter at a nearby farm where there is an indoor arena so I can keep working her. When it’s barely above zero, it’s pretty hard to stay with any kind of routine. You have to add 15 minutes every time you want to go outside- throwing on every item of clothing you own! Riding with all that stuff on is nearly impossible; let alone the fact that anything below 20 degrees may be harmful to the horse’s lungs! But as I drive to the barn each day, warm and snug in my 4-wheel-drive truck with heat blasting in my face, I think about the days when people would hook up the sleigh to travel down the road to help a neighbor or gather some necessaries. We have an antique foot warmer ( a little wood and steel box which would hold embers from a fire) that would have been placed on the floor of the sleigh. Heavy wool blankets and fur throws would be piled on and off they’d go. When I stop and ponder how long it took them to put that harness on the horse and hook it up to the sleigh (activities that require you to take your gloves OFF!) I can’t even imagine how they endured it. I gripe about needing to warm my horse’s bit (with an electric hair dryer) and having to wait for the fluorescent lights to slowly come on in the indoor ring, and I complain when my iPhone dies because it got too cold. I am such a whimp!
So here’s to the hardy doctors, farmers, friends and relatives who ventured out on freezing days to tend to those who needed help. This week’s painting is of the Weathersfield Inn (which I drive past every day on my way to play with Kate) as it might have looked 150 years ago or so. The horses provide the only splash of color in an otherwise nearly monochrome scene. This painting is 12″ X 16″ and is acrylic on canvas on board. It will be on display at the Inn until January 24. If you are interested in purchasing it for $425, please comment below or drop me an email and say “I’d Like the “Snow Inn” painting.” The names of people who are interested in this piece will be put in a hat and one will be drawn at noon on the 24th.