Friday, August 19, 2011

No burro left behind

The Bureau of Land Management came to Albuquerque yesterday with 44 mustangs and 5 burros available for adoption. 
Did I go? Hell yes. Did I take the horse trailer? Hell no. I know myself too well.

So I took only my camera and a devious plan. 
If I saw anyone remotely interested, I would extol the benefits of BLM burro adoption 
and try to convince them that they must take one or two home.


Three of the five burros were geldings, aged 2, 4 and 7. 
This guy with the fluffy ears and black muzzle is the 7-year-old. 
All three geldings had been passed by at several previous adoptions, so the opening bid for them was a token $25 instead of the usual $125. That sounded like an invitation to trouble if I've ever heard one. If anyone showed up who looked like they might 
take one home for roping practice, I was prepared to drop my resolve and outbid them.



The other two burros were jennys. This sweet girl is 10.


Would anyone be interested in adopting a 10-year-old burro? I could only hope.

She mothered and comforted the whole herd. Here she is with the 4-year-old gelding, who is blind in his left eye. 
Swell. Now I'm worried that nobody will adopt him either.


I needn't have been.


The auction began with the BLM man asking if anyone was interested in a burro. Hands were raised! 
One woman was quick to adopt a pair - the little half-blind gelding and another gelding to keep him company. 
A gentleman from Los Alamos adopted the 5-year old jenny. 
Another woman adopted the 7-year-old gelding with the black muzzle and fluffy ears. 
And the fifth and final burro, the 10-year-old jenny, was going home to burro heaven on earth...

...Morning Bray Farm. Here is Justina receiving the tag that the BLM man had just removed from the jenny's neck.


Me: Hon', if you knew where you were going, you'd be racing down that alley and into the trailer.



Me: Get used to the camera, sweetheart, this is just the beginning...



Guy in truck next to me: Look at that crazy lady taking pictures. 
Must be some kind of celebrity horse in that trailer up there.


Me: Welcome home, darlin'. I wonder what your name will be?


Justina: Boyz, meet your new sister...Gracie.



Of course they were all smitten. Gracie spent less than five minutes checking them out from her side of the corral 
when she decided enough with the solitary confinement. She calmly climbed between the two pipe rails to be with the boyz 
as Justina and I stood there dumbstruck. I was so stunned, I didn't even take a picture.


She walked around introducing herself and letting each and every one of them know she was in charge.


Nigel was in awe over her beauty.


Gracie: I think I'm going to like it here.


Nigel: I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.


Hearts that are broken by the passing of a beloved animal are not easy to mend, 
but getting them pumping again with another animal to love is a place to start.


A few have you have contacted me about the pendant above. It came from here.

76 comments:

  1. She climbed thru the fence?? She might be the smartest one of the lot, eh? So glad Justina did that. And I love her little heart pendant.

    C'mon. I know there's always room for one more at the 7MSN.

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  2. What a wonderful story ... you had me scared there for a minute wondering what was going to happen, but I had tears in my eyes when I was done. A few giggles too with Gracie climbing through the fence ... what a hoot!

    Life IS good, really, really good!

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  3. LOVE to read this. Wonderful Miss Gracie, can´t believe she walked through the fence. Ladies...

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  4. She climbed through the fence? That's it. People all over the country (the world, maybe?) will be sobbing into their hankies before the coffee is made today. What joy! What beauty!

    This is exactly what we all needed to see. Thank you.

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  5. Oh goosebumps! I blame Danni from over on Critter Farm for giving me a donkey fixation!
    LiBBiE in Oz

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  6. Aaawwww...... bless your little ole peapickin' hearts!

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  7. Diane in NC8/19/11, 5:14 AM

    You guys are very special people. What lucky critters you have. Morning Bray Farm, sending you a high five.

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  8. Dang. Now I'm all stuffed up from crying so early in the morning.

    Happy tears, of course!

    Congrats to Justina, Don, Gracie, the Morning Bray boys, and of course Auntie Linda!

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  9. aaaaaaahhhhh, I have tears in my eyes. Sweet Gracie, welcome home. Thanks for telling her story Carson.

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  10. Whoo boy. I'm smiling with tears running down my face.

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  11. Thanks for telling this story on Justina's behalf. A great story, especially because I know there's a happy ending.
    Gracie's just what's called for right now.

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  12. What a sweet face! I'm one of the people crying into my coffee.

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  13. Thank you for a wonderful start to my weekend, even though there are tears in my eyes. Bless you and Morning Bray folks!

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  14. A good day at the auction :-) :-)

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  15. Yay!!! Welcome, sweet Gracie!! We all love you so much already. And, ohmygosh, how I would have loves to have been there to see that!
    You are a wonderful friend, Carson.

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  16. What wonderful news!!! Perhaps Lucy has taught you the joy of adding an older woman/mother figure to the herd?! My love and best wishes to all of you, 2-foots and 4-foots alike, and thank you so much for chronicling the day!

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  17. Anne Boleyn8/19/11, 6:05 AM

    Sobbing here. Happy happy sobbing.

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  18. Teared up! Such a heart-warming story!

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  19. What a wonderful post! It makes me laugh that she climbed through the fence to make an immediate introduction to the herd considering all the care you took to introduce Lucy at a nice slow, safe pace. Obviously this new little girl will be running MBF soon enough!

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  20. Yesss!!!! Omg, I got all teary-eyed reading that. Can't wait to see how those herd dynamics change with a girl of the female persuasion mixed in.

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  21. This is wonderful! Gracie is lovely, and she sure made herself at home! How I wish I could meet all your donkeys.

    Nancy in Iowa

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  22. Oh, and...yes, that is a celebrity in that trailer!!

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  23. Wow, great story, I cried and smiled the whole time! Yay for Gracie. Can't wait to hear the continuing escapades of all the burros!

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  24. Ohhhh, happy tears here for Justina and Don. Really thought you were going to drive home and pick up your trailer and get a partner in crime for Lucy. but this is just as grand. Happy for all.

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  25. Welome home Gracie. Welcome home!

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  26. I've never owned a burro, but I know about the broken heart feeling from losing faithful rottweilers in the past. The break in the heart just heals into a scar that never goes completely away. Animals are just so sweet. I'm happy Gracie is there with your boys. She's going to be soooo happy!

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  27. Estella from Co.8/19/11, 6:50 AM

    She's sooo fit and trim and her feet from what I could see are in good shape. If they have them for a period of time do they work with them at all, as far as trimming feet, shots, teeth, or are they AS IS when you adopt them. My critters should look so good...watch out kids, diet time. Gracie is very blessed and I can't believe you didn't get pictures of her going thru the fence, did it happen that quick? She's a smart one Well, hugs to the kids and have a good one.

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  28. Can't believe she climbed through the fence! Gracie is so lucky to be going to a wonderful home. I'm sure she's going to love it there.

    I was surprised there weren't pictures of the mustangs, are you sure Hank wouldn't like a little friend. Maybe he wouldn't be upset with a mare?

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  29. Thank God I'm not the only big baby crying over this. My coworkers must think I'm crazy, always crying over donkeys.

    What a lucky girl Gracie is! And what a good name Justina picked out!

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  30. Oh Oh Oh!!!! Happy Happy Joy Joy!!!!When I read your Twitter update yesterday, I thought, "What?" Who knew there was a nearby sibling? Now I get it. What a lucky bunch of burros:-)

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  31. First of all, you took some beautiful photos.
    I think Gracie will do a good job of mending broken hearts. Did you notice she's the spittin' image of my favorite MBF burro Nigel?

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  32. Hello Gracie (waving from CanadaEH) she climbed thru the fence?!?!?! she's going to be more entertaining than a 3 ringed circus.

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  33. How wonderful to see a girl join the ranks. And of course she would climb thru the rails. At ten, she knows all the tricks...

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  34. Yee-haw! I'm thrilled for Justina, Don and the burro brothers! :) That Gracie sure is a looker. She is going to run the place in no time. She must have figured out pretty quick that she was taken to donkey nirvana. Seeing her roll like that tells you she was totally comfortable with the boyz!

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  35. Cool! Yeah, Los Alamos guy! Here in Los Alamos we have a horse/cattle stable area (really lots of paddocks with sheds etc.) with adjoining riding/hiking trails out to the end of the mesa.

    Thanks for the great post.

    - Sarah Morgan (usually a lurker)

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  36. You may have already posted about this and I haven't stumbled across it...yet. Can you talk a little about how hard it is to tame these guys down when you bring them home - for daily handling, feet trimming, vet work...?

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  37. Gracie...gracefully climbs through fences!
    So glad you were there to document this wondrous event!

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  38. Oh Lordy, I've got tears in my eyes! Congrats, Gracie! You hit the jackpot. I know Fergus is smiling. :o)

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  39. What a great story to start my morning with, tears notwithstanding! As for climbing through the fence....well, I can't wait to read more of her adventures at MBF - I can only imagine the mischief she'll get up to! :)

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  40. Thank you so much for sharing Gracie's story with us. I'm thrilled for Justina and Don and the Boyz and can't wait to get to know her through the blogs as time goes by.

    And congratulations to you on a job well done with your will power... I'm not sure that I could have resisted temptation at an auction...

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  41. Tears here too. Thank you Carson for the photos and story. At last, happy once again at MB Farms! We will all miss Fergus, but what a wonderful thing to adopt another burro needing love and a home. Sounds like Gracie has adjusted very well and very quickly.

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  42. Tears are flowing into my coffee cup right now!!! Looks like its gonna be watered down coffee this morning.

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  43. Lois E. Hoover8/19/11, 9:12 AM

    Gracie looks so great. She is happy that you got her for your beautiful ranch. Much love from Lois

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  44. What a wonderful, heartwarming story! The minute I saw Gracie, I was hoping that SOMEBODY would take her...she looks like a real "mom" to those boys! Can't believe her getting through the fence! Wow! That's determination! Can't wait for followups about Gracie!

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  45. My heart is bursting with love and happiness now that Justina and Don adopted a new sister donkey, Gracie for the boyz! Thank you, Auntie Linda for taking pictures for their parents and those are so precious!

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  46. I was hoping and hoping someone would adopt that 10 yo jenny but thought it highly unlikely. And then she was. And it was Justina!! I cried like a baby all over my keyboard. I am so, so, SO happy.

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  47. I felt like my heart was going to burst through my chest; thank you for sharing this beautiful story so well. I'm so happy for Gracie.

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  48. I've been reading in my google reader so haven't made any comments in long while.

    I had to say this made me so happy this morning. What a great thing to happen to all those burros, but especially to Gracie.

    Thank you and Justina for sharing this with us.

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  49. What a great post!! I am so happy for Gracie and Morning Bray Farms. Linda you have me tearing up at my desk again! They are happy tears though. :) So happy for everyone and can't wait to see more pictures of the group with the new addition of Gracie!

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  50. Oh, Carson! You (and Justina) made me cry! Gracie is clearly going to be the boss/mother of everybody! What a wonderful story -- and the perfect choice of a new donkey sister for the boys!

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  51. Oh how I love a happy story like this, it melts my pessimistic heart!

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  52. I was grinning from ear to ear when I read your and Morning Brays tweets yesterday. I couldn't wait to see Gracie this morning. Loved the picture of the trailer.

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  53. So glad you named this post "no burro left behind," so we knew from the beginning there would be a happy ending....

    But how much happier than I imagined!

    Hooray!!!!!

    Thank you for sharing the story and pics with us.

    That image of her comforting the other burro, along with your words about her doing so -- sounds like she may be a heart-mender extraordinaire!

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  54. I hope they all got homes as good as Gracie got!

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  55. What makes me happiest is the wonderful friendship between you and everyone at Morning Bray.

    Gracie is beautiful.........Thank you, dear Fergus <3

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  56. OK, so now I'm all sniffling and teary-eyed. This is a beautiful story, beautifully told. I know how hard it is when you've lost one, but I always try to remind myself that losing one opens up a space for another. Well done, all of you! Gracie is in for the time of her life...

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  57. Such good news! All looked like sweethearts.

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  58. Such a lovely post! And she's beautiful!

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  59. Well if Gracie climbed through the fence once, she will probably climb through it again so maybe MBF will have a another chance at a photo opp. I would love to see how she did that....video would be even better. How do you "donkey proof" MBF for a donkey as smart and determined as Gracie? Oh lordy----I think MBF life just got a lot more complicated.

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  60. Yay for Gracie! She's a beauty. I'm sure she's going to love her new life.

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  61. Auntie Linda you are the bestest of friends to all at MBF. Thanks for telling the story of the adorable Ms. Gracie. You know it's great to be in the majority here....crying and loving every word and photo that you shared. Happy hearts for MBF are here again. One can never get over a loss like dear Fergus but getting beyond it is always helped by good friends like you and all the others that love MBF and especially by a sweet new donkey girl named "Gracie the Amazing fence climbing trickster". Oma Linda, The Olde Bagg

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  62. Aww, I love a happy ending!!

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  63. Best story ever!
    Always, Sandra

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  64. sniff, sniff, Beautiful!!!!

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  65. Oh I LOVED this. I'm off to follow Morning Bray Farm.

    I can't believe you of all people didn't get a photo of her climbing through the bars of that fence. She will be fun to follow. Thanks.

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  66. So true. Glad Gracie found such a fabulous home.

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  67. Happy tears all around! Gracie is beautiful and so lucky to have landed at Morning Bray! No doubt that girl is going to give the boyz a run for their money....

    What a great pictorial, Linda. Thanks for sharing.

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  68. Simply an awesome post. And she climbed through the fence!

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  69. Anne Boleyn8/19/11, 9:21 PM

    I have read this post 4 times today. I just keep coming back, showing it to other people, loving the whole story so much.
    Thanks again!

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  70. I am tearing up reading about beautiful Gracie. She has no idea of what she is in for :)

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  71. Ohmigosh how funny... that pic with the boyz checking out Gracie, I was thinking "I wonder if anyone would climb through the fence?"

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  72. Thank you for this wonderful story! made me smile and want to run out and hug my 9mo old donk Patches. he was headed to the slaughter barn two months ago. It makes me shudder each time I think about it.

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  73. Oh, she's a sweetie pie! I'm so glad there's a new addition to the Morning Bray Family :).

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  74. When you're ready for a vacation, they are catching and rehoming the wild donkeys on the Big Island, Hawaii.

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  75. OK tears here...glad Gracie is at Morning Bray.

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