Friday, March 23, 2012




or in my case -


smack and then crack

crack and smack


what came first

the smack

or the crack.

i think it was the smack

and i'm don't talking about drugs

the ones you buy on the street

or in empty, cold buildings

or in the ghetto

or on Sunset Strip

I'm talking about a horse -

the kind you buy in tchad

the kind that young girls see -

galloping like stars across inky closed-eye wish-fulness

and so

this is the story of Bob:

Part 1.

when I found out his name was Bob - I wanted to rename him immediately

you see, bob goes well with dylan, or with hope,

or to depict angular, agreeable, well-meaning men named in the 50's


it didn't seem like the name of a horse

the name of the regal

of the majestic

of man's true best friend

it didn't seem like the name

of the stallions that raced across the Arabian desert

or the mustangs that kicked and bucked, wild and free through the purple painted deserts of the northwest

or that crossed the sea in Spanish galleons

or that fell wild in battle beside hero and fool


the name of a creature that changed the destiny of mankind

that was the vehicle of sweeping change
the wheel before the wheel

that was a herald of knowledge

bearer of knights and kings and peasants

and wild young women with fiery dreams

the surefooted vehicle of freedom

the creature that gives us wings

that teaches about strength and loyalty and big blue sky


so I decided to re-name him:

Bobacious Enkidu Odysseus III

but for short

we will call him bob

keeping in mind the much more fitting title lurking behind the nickname

of course

Part II

so, bob

when i was working on IMCU, at home,

I remember announcing,

when I get to Africa,

I'm going to get a horse

and as I said it

I decided

I am.

I am going to get a horse

but a statement so simple is not so simple in tchad

first there were the initial months of asking around

in a language i didn't speak

for a horse

of approaching the Arabs

that lounged around the hospital grounds

and asking them

in French

for a horse

(the good horses are usually kept by the Arabs here)

the only thing that came out of that

was one Sunday, when i was expecting to finally see my prospective horse

there was waiting an Arab chaeffer instead



meme chose, no?????

Part III

long story, shortened.

Sarah Appel was looking for a home for Bob, one of their 3 horses.

After convincing her that I would be a perfect solution

there came the stress of building a "hanger"

a structure to keep the hay off the ground

the frustration of locating and buying bean leaves

peanut leaves

rice straw

of saturday treks to the march to get


red millet,

to buy feed buckets

to look for rope.

then getting here

the writing of official documents

authorizing travel

getting the necessary papers stamped

several false starts from the man

that agreed to ride him back.

so, the day my rider arrives to pick up the horse - I am med- evaced home

Part IV

back again.

i finally get him.

first ride - splendid

2nd ride - no ride

3rd ride - broken sacrum

its all about taking risks right?? thats why they call them RISKS?? the outcome isn't always magical.....

but even so, my misbehaving horse was a risk absolutely worth taking.

and really

how can you not love a horse


bobacious Enkidu Odysseus III???

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