The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

Visit us on FaceBookGenerations of Memories
from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

Growing Up On Tuggles Creek - Old Lady

By YKW © 1985

Issue: August, 1985

(Editor's Note: Tuggles Creek is located in the Heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, near the tiny mountain community of Meadows of Dan, Virginia. Meadows of Dan is a crossroads community where US Highway 58 Business and the Blue Ridge Parkway cross. Mabry Mill is north about 1.6 miles and Mayberry Trading Post is about 2.8 miles south on the Blue Ridge Parkway.)

My dad kept at least four or five horses so that he could alternate them for duty like a baseball manager does his pitchers. He felt that his horses had to be high spirited to stand the grind of over 30 miles a day. He was constantly trading horses and would bring home a new one every few months.

One day he brought home a high spirited "buggy mare" called "Lady." I was supposed to plow some corn next day so I asked him if Lady would plow corn. He replied that he didn't know, that I'd just have to try her out.

Well, next morning I got out and proceeded to hitch Lady up to the plow. She was highly insulted at this indignity and began kicking wildly over the traces. Soon she had one of the chain traces wrapped tightly around one of her hind legs. The more she struggled, the tighter the chain drew until it drew her down to a sitting position. Then she began hopping around like an oversized kangaroo, having kicked loose from the plow.

I didn't dare get close enough to untangle her, so I just said, "Old girl, you got yourself into this. Now see if you can get yourself out."

Well, she hopped and kicked all over the place for about half an hour til she finally wore herself out enough so I could remove the chain. I got the old gal back in the barn where I promised her "Ladyship" I'd never ask her to stoop so low as to ever plow corn again.