ANGELS AMONG US

SX OMEGA's Passing

Angel: Marsha Achenbach

August 12, 2000

I have been in tears off and on all day today. I gave SX Omega, the last-born son of the imported Crabbet stallion *SERAFIX away to a retirement home this morning. He leaves Mon. Jess Wiltamuth, the then 18 year old, said, "So, why are you crying? That's good, isn't it?"

Yes, it is good. I chose peace over profit.

There are angels among us. This lady, Marsha Achenbach, who is taking him, is one. So is her husband Bob, for tolerating her acquisition when common sense said that was not the smart move. They are angels for fencing off a portion of their alfalfa field so he could have some green to chew on, even though the required fence-building took place during some of the hottest days of the summer, and they surely could have found a more relaxing way to spend their time.

I've only had Omega since he was 22 and a half, and he is 26 now, so Jess doesn't think I have had time enough to become attached to him. This tough kid who sat with his dead colt (Omega's son) in his arms last summer, sobbing his eyes out... I DID NOT remind him of it.

Omega is going off to die, no matter where he is going to do it. That is SAD. He's a neat old horse, and it is sad.

If I were rich, I'd take a full page in the Arabian Horse World and run each daughter, The PASSING OF THE TORCH or some such. His oldest here are only three year olds. The one that has had 30 days under saddle learned so quickly it was exciting to watch his progress. He went on to his new home, and continues to bask in the attention.

You know what I keep remembering? My Polish boyfriend that I almost married, years ago, saying when Flashy Belladonna flipped over a fence and broke her neck, "You don't cry for horses; you cry for people."

Sorry. I can't manage that, even yet. I cry for both.

--San

Monday

I gave Omega away last Saturday. I just loaded him into Marsha Achenbach's lovely three horse aluminum slant load with living quarters. He clamored willingly into an entire bale of fresh shavings to cushion his several hour trip to his retirement home over on the Mississippi River.

He goes to a place where he will still have a shed and pen so he can choose to be in or out, as he did here, but with many more amenities. He won't have to worry about the mares and other stallions being right there to keep him thinking about breeding. (The vet who saw him the day he left said that if he kept trying to breed, it would kill him. When your eyeball is only two inches away from any sweet young thing that desires attention, it is pretty hard to be indifferent.)

This farm has NO place without other stallions or mares right there, constantly reminding the old guy of his problems.

And that lush alfalfa field! Surely that had to seem like heaven on earth to him! He could see the mares and gelding off in the distance, but not close enough to worry about them overly much.

And he managed to canter again.

It still was very hard to let him go. I think I did the majority of my crying on Sat. when she and her daughter came to "meet" him. He is their first stallion, and she wanted to be sure he was something she could handle. She stopped in on her way over to pick up some of his special grain at the elevator I use. I feel real good about it.

I've been spending extra time with his coming two year old Pinto son, OMYNO PANDEMONIUM. It bothers me that I can't seem to take good photos of him yet; he's still in his yearling uglies, but the potential still shows.

I try to focus on the three "possibles" hopefully coming in 2001, one of which will surely claim the moniker "Pandemonium Parting Shot".

And Marsha found another brand of suppliment that he WOULD eat, so the fat content was better. And he habitually improves in the fall, when the heat passes and the mares are mostly already in foal.

--San

Thursday, November 2, 2000

Sandy,

Just to let you know that Omega was gently laid to rest on October 25th.

He had a good couple months, enjoying his lush green pasture and his daily one-on-one human contact. He surely did love being scratched, and in general just hung out with. He spent a lot of time outside, being in his shed only during the really hot times, and that ugly cold spell we had early in October.

He had put on close to 200 lbs, and really looked good, shiny and alert. Then he started to show signs of further motor nerve degeneration in the caudal nerves with urinary incontinence and greater difficulty arising after a snooze in the sun.

He now rests permanently under a slope of the hayfield overlooking the pasture he last grazed in.

--Marsha

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