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Saturday, October 27, 2012

My blog for 10/27/2012 Temporary title: Silver Strutter Dead




Realtor Maria Sebastian skipped down the stairs of the building in Gainesville, Georgia.  Having been built in 1936, it was no longer used  for basketball but now housed an insurance office, a real estate investment broker, a couple of small spaces for day traders and a marketing company whose product was dog collars.  Part of the old basketball court had been converted to a dance studio where Maria took tap dance lessons.

            She’d fallen in love with tap dancing when she was six years old.  Her grandma put upholstery tacks in the heels and toes of her own as well as Maria’s sneakers, turned on her phonograph and they secretly danced in the garage of her grandma’s house.  Now, so many years later, Maria couldn’t abandon her roots, as she viewed her closet tap addiction.  She obviously couldn’t practice in her carport because the neighbors could see her and tap dancing was a private affair between herself and her grandma. 

            “We don’t need fancy shoes, just so we can hear our toes,” grandma had said.

            Exhilarated, Maria checked her watch and hurried to her white Jeep Cherokee.  Gas for the trip to Gainesville every week was an absolute extravagance that would have made her frugal mother cringe.  But she didn’t plan to discuss it with her mom. 

            If she hurried, she wouldn’t be late meeting her client to show the woman the most gorgeous horse barn in Forsyth County.  It had three hundred acres of rolling pastures outlined with four rail black board fencing.  To date it housed two Tennessee Walker championship stallions, Silver Strutter, a glistening black son of Colorado Strutter, and Mr. Ambling Man, son of Amber Ambler, a slick liver chestnut with gold highlights.

            Breedings were lined up to the moon that would produce an income for that barn for the next five years.  Maria had never seen the studs and was excited to check out the boy’s barn today for the first peek.  The seller, Dixon Wrathmire, wanted a large facility to house the mares that had composite runs criss-crossing the inside stalls.  Two handlers could then switch off exercising the ladies during bad weather.  The sometimes thick pads on their feet needed to remain as dry as possible.  If he could sell the farm he wouldn’t have to take down the old barn and rebuild it with a huge outlay of cash.  He could get the bank to finance the whole thing for him at a new site across the county.

            Maria shoved the hoof paddings out of her brain.  It did not compute that Walking horses with a natural gait should be ignored and the ones born with a pace instead of the traditional ambling gait were “trained” through the use of chemicals and hoof padding into the artificial strut that won championship awards in Shelbyville, Tennessee.  But she was just a lowly realtor and didn’t have to know more than the condition of the rails, the feeders and waterers of the horsefarms she sold.  Three hundred acres, a modest but lovely home, a complete commercial barn and several outbuildings for studs and storage made a tight little package for a breeder planning to grow.

            She sped across the lake, back toward the Chestatee Community of Forsyth County.

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