Bright spark

Every Friday, Anklebiter 1 (and sometimes number 2) and I head out to a horse ranch as soon as school finishes.

The road winds past dilapidated barns and wide open countryside; the road twisting and turning and narrowing as we near our destination in the middle of nowhere.

We brush Attila, who despite his name is a darling, and then we saddle up and my daughter rides away, with the rest of us (dog included) trailing after…

Last week, AB1 went to the field to fetch Attila. Several large horses blocked the way and wouldn’t let her out.

She asked me to help by unhitching the electric fence wires and then chase these horses – did I mention how huge they are? – away.

I took my gloves off and grabbed the hook thingie to detach the wires.

Apparently, you’re supposed to grab the plastic handles and not the actual wires of an electric fence…

I yelled loudly. I shook and you could almost see my skeleton as I vibrated like a cartoon character.

But my piercing scream did the trick. The large horses ran off, terrified.

The ranch owners came running.

“Oh, it’s just me!” I said with my singed hair standing up on end. “Just testing the electric fence for you…”


“It all works fine!”

(No wonder my daughter says I’m embarrassing…)

For more electrifying stories, please visit: Camera Critters.

64 responses

  1. Heavens, the things you do for your kids!

    By the way, I’ve been told that horses somehow end up with names that offer the contrary impression of their behaviour – “Lightening” will probably be a slug, whereas a horse called “Slowcoach” will probably be quite fast…


    March 5, 2011 at 16:00

  2. My smile is as wide as your daughter’s, Fi! Hope that jolt of energy is still putting some spring in your step!


    March 5, 2011 at 16:03

  3. Well, that’s a shocking lesson indeed! (And kids always say their parents are embarrassing. It’s some kid of law of nature or something.) πŸ™‚ Humorous story to start the day here! Thanks!!!


    March 5, 2011 at 16:30

  4. Love the pictures!
    As a farmer, I’ve quarreled with electric fences all too many times. So, I definitely feel for ya!


    March 5, 2011 at 16:32

  5. Beautiful images, I used to ride horses as a young girl.;)
    So did the ranch owners believe you?;)
    Have a great weekend,


    March 5, 2011 at 16:46

  6. Cecilia

    Oooh…hahahahahahaha *gasping for breath* hahahahahahaha.


    March 5, 2011 at 16:47

  7. Blu

    Horses kick and so do electric fences! YOUCH! I realise that you were just demonstrating to your children what not to do! Mad Mummy!


    March 5, 2011 at 16:53

  8. I have been horseback riding only once. I wish I had more experience with the beautiful horses!


    March 5, 2011 at 16:53

  9. your daughter’s smile is gorgeous. she’s happy. glorious photos as usual. I learned the realities of an electric fence as a girl and it isn’t pleasant. once touched, never again. have a great weekend!


    March 5, 2011 at 17:01

  10. May


    Oh you poor thing. I grew up in the country, where the little boys would dare each other to pee on the electric fence wires. Luckily I was a little girl. πŸ˜‰


    March 5, 2011 at 17:02

  11. Jen

    Yes a rather energizing day wasn’t it? Well I guess that you won’t be doing that again…

    Been there done that, but not quite as badly.

    Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams


    March 5, 2011 at 17:32

  12. I would have done the same thing with the fence
    I once grasped a barb wire fence right where it was sharpest

    beautiful shots
    I love how happy your girl looks
    and Atilla is magnificent


    March 5, 2011 at 17:41

  13. whew…bet you will check next time…beautiful horses…took a boy i work with out to do therapy witht he horses a few weeks back…he loved it…


    March 5, 2011 at 17:41

  14. Ouch! hahaha, sorry canΒ΄t help laughing though.


    March 5, 2011 at 18:36

  15. girl from cherry blossom street

    Oh Lady Fi, I love horses! There is something so magnificent about them!
    “could almost see my skeleton as I vibrated like a cartoon character”…
    Well that is terrifying (but you wrote it in a funny way!) ha! πŸ˜‰


    March 5, 2011 at 19:02

  16. land of shimp

    Hehehe!! Well, you could also always claim you wanted to make sure you are still a conductor. These things are important to know! “Control test! Gravity and conductivity still functioning! Woo!”

    I’m glad you’re okay. Way, way back in the day when I was a camp counselor the guys would try to sucker the newest male counselor into peeing on an electric fence.

    I tell you this to make you feel better: Most of them were willing to try. Oy.


    March 5, 2011 at 19:20

  17. That is the greatest story!! Do it again Mom. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.


    March 5, 2011 at 19:22

  18. I love the visual of “…my singed hair standing up on end.”!!!



    March 5, 2011 at 19:27

  19. OMG!! Glad you lived to share your story!


    March 5, 2011 at 19:28

  20. lilalia

    You poor dear, what a frightening experience that must have been. Even having studied electrical engineering, or maybe because of it, I have a great respect for live wires. Glad to hear you are fine.


    March 5, 2011 at 20:47

  21. Nice horse pics. Very entertaining story. I am extra careful with electronic fences but I know that it is just a matter of time.


    March 5, 2011 at 21:07

  22. Mo

    What a delightful horse


    March 5, 2011 at 21:16

  23. Amy

    Hahaha, oh no you poor thing!!! Very cool you give your kids the chance to ride! Just being around such impressive animals helps give them confidence and compassion just to name a few things! Wonderful!!
    Have a great weekend and watch out for those electric fences from now on!!


    March 5, 2011 at 21:20

  24. Oh MY! You DID make me laugh! (And every mother is embarrassing!)


    March 5, 2011 at 21:23

  25. LOL – your description made me picture everything clearly. I grew up on a farm and learned to be wary of electric fences as a child!

    That’s a great shot of your daughter. Her joy shines on her face.


    March 5, 2011 at 21:34

  26. Did the farmer thanked you for your trouble πŸ˜‰

    Your daughter I am sure will appreciate your devotion to her soon enough. Enjoy your week-end, ladify.


    March 5, 2011 at 21:49

  27. okay, I adore you.
    and those photos are stunning.


    March 5, 2011 at 22:03

  28. Lovely tale. I love the photo of your daughter riding horses and that soft, winter snow. Your narrative and photos creates such a beautiful piece.


    March 6, 2011 at 00:53

  29. That seems like fun.
    Last time i rode a horse, i was only six


    March 6, 2011 at 03:00

  30. Beautiful captures!

    My Critter post, have a lovely weekend!


    March 6, 2011 at 03:38

  31. That’s precious. Thanks for visiting my blog!


    March 6, 2011 at 04:15

  32. Nothing else on Camera Critters could top this, Fi, not even reach it! I’m glad you came out of it okay. It must have been a scary experience for your delightful daughter, not just embarrassing!
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie’s Guide to Adventurous Travel


    March 6, 2011 at 04:28

    • She wasn’t scared really… just very very embarrassed! (Ten points to mom!)


      March 6, 2011 at 06:59

  33. I enjoyed that–I am sorry it was at your expense. What moms have to do!

    Beautiful photos.


    March 6, 2011 at 04:39

  34. lol! your commentary was so vivid it was like watching a short documentary!

    beautiful images!


    March 6, 2011 at 08:34

  35. Oh dear….I laughed…sorry hon! It was the ‘no wonder my daughter says I’m embarassing’ bit that did it!

    C x


    March 6, 2011 at 11:20

  36. OMG, that sounded scary. I hope you are alright! Your daughter looks so happy on her horse. Wonderful photos.


    March 6, 2011 at 12:09

  37. Always remember “Safety First”! πŸ˜‰
    Hope you’re alright!


    March 6, 2011 at 12:17

  38. If you do what you did at horse ranch in Japan, the magnitude of the voltage is less than a half:) Do you wanna give it a try??? I hope you did not have a camera with you when you got an electric shock!
    Actually I had the same experience when we lived in UmeΓ₯. I dropped something at home and stupidly trying to grab it blindly under the table and touched AC plug accidentally with my right hand. Then my LEFT hand went up by itself!!!


    March 6, 2011 at 14:40

  39. WOW & OWW! I’m glad you’re OK after that shocking experience! Glad to know the shock was not worse than it was and that you are OK. The things we do for our kids to help them learn…LOL


    March 6, 2011 at 15:21

  40. The picture of your daughter on the horse with a bright smile on her face is priceless, even thought you had to pay a “shocking” price to get it.


    March 6, 2011 at 16:14

  41. Oooh – I had to giggle although I know that jolt must have been unnerving. Glad you’re OK. My bro-in-law and my sister were here for a visit and he wondered about all the electric fences in the cow pastures. He was skeptical even after I showed him the battery sitting in the back of the pasture and the size of the cows. He tested it and in a high-pitched voice said “yeah – it’s got a little juice.”

    You had a ? re: our destination on my blog: we’ll be East of San Francisco and husband commuting into the City. No real winter’s there – have to admit, I’ll miss a real Winter season (some of the time).


    March 6, 2011 at 20:46

  42. Beautiful photos, but oh my gosh, I jumped in my seat right here when you said you touched the wire! And then smiled at your response to it.


    March 6, 2011 at 21:07

  43. SO enjoyable to ride with you over your lovely countryside!

    Aloha from Honolulu

    Comfort Spiral




    March 6, 2011 at 21:22

  44. Oh my! that is something I would do!! lol Glad you’re ok!


    March 6, 2011 at 22:03

  45. Oh My! That is certainly a “hair-raising” experience! YIKES! Glad you survived to tell the tale.


    March 7, 2011 at 01:39

  46. What an electrifying tale! Yep, it works. πŸ˜‰


    March 7, 2011 at 03:08

  47. Beautiful photo! Your daughter looks so happy and the horse is very stately. I love the colors ~
    Have a wonderful week ~


    March 7, 2011 at 03:22

  48. AB1 loves to ride..she looks so happy! I think perhaps her Mother should take some Farm Girl 101 classes or something..:)


    March 7, 2011 at 05:47

  49. Hahaha, oh wow. I’m so paranoid of grabbing those things when I’m at my boyfriends. This post has done nothing to alleviate my fears!

    How beautiful is that photo of her riding? You can see she’s just in her element!


    March 7, 2011 at 06:00

  50. I wish to learn riding some day πŸ™‚ Good snaps

    Shooting from the Hip


    March 7, 2011 at 08:23

  51. Thats quite a story!!!
    Beautiful images, loved the fence and indeed the horse:)
    Have a lovely day:)

    My Yatra Diary…


    March 7, 2011 at 12:49

  52. I’ve zapped myself on dozens of those things…and never learn!


    March 7, 2011 at 12:49

  53. I am sooooo happy that all is well with you. But confess that as dramatic as it really MUST have been, when I read it… I cracked up.

    The story and photos are simply delightful. However, please…PLEASE… from now on do stay away from bees, electric fences…and don’t even think about coming close to a Rail Road crossing!!

    But now answer a question that I am itching to know…
    Do you glow in the dark?


    March 7, 2011 at 14:41

  54. Nothing like the joy on the face of a little girl on her horse — or even a big girl, for that matter. He looks like a Belgian. I love that coloring.

    Yes. The plastic handles, not the wires. πŸ˜‰


    March 7, 2011 at 18:24

  55. Good grief Lady, that is going above and beyond the call of duty — even when it’s all for your daughter! And (in retrospect) it makes for a very funny experience. (I’ve never met a daughter yet who wasn’t embarrassed sometimes by her mother…but when she grows up yours will look back on it and laugh (and laugh)….


    March 7, 2011 at 20:31

  56. Not where I thought this post was going! πŸ™‚ I’m enjoying your sense of humor about the incident. I’ve lived places where asking the new neighbor to grab the fence and hold it is considered the official welcome to the neighborhood.

    I hope your anklebiters appreciate all you do for them.


    March 8, 2011 at 13:19

  57. What we do for love!! Ha! Now you don’t need that perm you were thinking of! Loved this post! Great story!! And beautiful photography!
    Congrats on your POTW award


    March 9, 2011 at 11:11

  58. This brought back some fun memories playing with the fence. We sometimes made a chain holding hands and then the 1st person touched the fence. The one at the end got zapped worse.Clapping hands make mine run off, or a tap on the rump.


    March 9, 2011 at 16:21

  59. came back to say congrats on POTW


    March 10, 2011 at 05:04

  60. ds

    I’m not shocked to see how happy your daughter is astride that horse…Hope that you are over yours.

    Congratulations on your POTW.


    March 10, 2011 at 07:07

  61. Oh my goodness! You poor thing … I could picture it perfectly as I read your recap!


    March 10, 2011 at 23:31

  62. ha, ha! We have electric fence, too, and occasionally I unintentionally “test” it. The horses are very careful of it, though. They must be smarter than I am.
    Glad your daughter is able to get out to a farm to ride. That’s how I started out when I was about her size, straddling a friendly pony out in a field.


    March 13, 2011 at 16:45

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