Horse News

The Winds of Destruction

Excerpt from the book Straight from the Horse’s Heart by R.T. Fitch

For all the Souls that await the arrival of Isaac

“Exactly seven years ago this day, I penned these jumbled sentences, below, in an effort to make sense of the feelings that both Terry, myself and our horses felt as Hurricane Katrina was bearing down upon our small Louisiana farm.  Today Terry and the herd are safe in Texas, where we currently reside, and it appears out of harms way, but the same is not true for our friends along the northern gulf coast of the mighty USA.  So from half way around the world I extend a virtual hand to those who are sharing the same feelings and asking the exact same questions we struggled with over a half a decade ago; truly, may the ‘Force of the Horse®’ be with you” ~ R.T.


The horses have been turned loose in the pasture, the hanging plants have been secured, the wind chimes are down, and all equipment is securely stowed.

Now, all that is left to do is wait; wait for the storm to do what it will do.

Churning viciously out in the Gulf of Mexico is a monster the size of three states – a furious beast that breathes rain, hail, and destruction at the rate of over 165 miles per hour.  It’s the stuff that science fiction movies are made of.  We wait; for what, we do not know.

We could have left; we had time.  In fact, I tried to persuade my bride to depart with her cat yesterday morning, but she would not leave me and the rest of our family.  She seems to feel that she needs to be with us.  I, however, feel otherwise.  We recently bought a four-horse slant load trailer just for this purpose.  Now that we have five horses sharing our lives with us, we opted to stay and await our destiny.

This is not new to me.  A Florida resident for several decades, I have been through my fair share of hurricanes.  In fact, we are in better shape now as Laughing Horse Farm is hooked up to a new, state-of-the-art generator that will keep us in power long after those who have lost theirs are sweltering in the heat.  All is well and good; that is, if anything is still left standing.

Why are we here; what is running through the minds of the horses?  They know that something is wrong; they smell it, they feel it.  Why are we here?  Why do we live with the thought of total destruction of all material goods and the potential loss of life in the back of our minds?  What made us stay?

The outer rain bands of the storm are swirling violently over our heads and the winds are picking up.  As the sun sets, it casts an eerie pall over the landscape; its fractured light bounces off from the massive thunderstorms.  There is a feeling of impending doom in the air; you could cut it with a knife.  The horses are running anxiously in the pasture while the cows are crying out from behind.  They know.  Why are we here?  What will come?  We have lost control and submit.  We pray for those souls that may soon depart.  We are only mortal and cannot change what is certain destiny.  We are diminished by the size and the immensity of what looms over our heads.  We are humbled by the realization that we are not supreme in any way shape or form.  We only do what we can.

Why are we here?

12 replies »

  1. RT
    For some reason I thought you & Terry lived in Texas. So sorry you are getting hit by this once again. Hopefully the weather people will be right & it will not be as bad as Katrina.
    Hang in there – we all will be thinking of you.


    • Maggie, in this article it is stated that RT and Terri do live in Texas these days. They are also not in the U.S. right now, but over seas on a venture. Hopefully the storm won’t affect Texas and their place either.


    • Maggie, we are currently in Texas and have been for the last 6 years. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately for the horses?), we were in Lafayette during both Katrina and Rita. We didn’t move back to Texas until 2006.


  2. I remeber reading stories of horses left in barns,tied up or lose in box stalls that were killed by the roofs calasping becasue of the storms during Katrina! Then I recall people in new Orleans and other towns who had to abandon their dogs and cats! Then so many were recused and of course so many died! I recall that also in Texas! I recall when the next hurricane was going to hit Texas, people were able to take their animals along. I heard horror stories of people somehow pulling out their horses from the trailers that died thanks the heat and left on the side of the road! A good thing gone bad!! Anyway we have learned from the past and hopefully nothing like this will happen again!


  3. I think, it is so wonderful, that you decided to stay with the horses. Yes, they feel the upcoming of the moods of nature, even more then we do. That must be so frightening to them. Again, thank you for staying with them, and Good Luck to you, Terry, your family. and the Horses. Solvejg.


    • It looks like we’re good as it appears the path of the storm is going to descend upon Louisiana, once again. We should be on the clean side of the storm. Thanks for thinking of us!!!!


  4. has some really good advice today, you don’t have to be a member to read it. Good luck to you, your entire “family” and anyone who is going to ride it out!!! Later, Pat GF, Mt.Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2012 10:52:35


  5. Since R.T. is currently in the air trying to make his way home, I thought that I would share some of what we (as well as many other Habitat for Horses volunteers and volunteers throughout the country) went through 7 years ago during Hurricane Katrina. Here’a video that R.T. put together depicting a small portion of events. Seven years later, it still brings tears to my eyes!


  6. Wow, Terry – it must have been something else! You sure did accomplish a lot getting those animals to safety. Hope this storm doesnt come anywhere near you – altho it looks as tho its moving northward rather than towards Texas.


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