Equine Rescue

The Winds of Destruction

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

We shall not Forget

15 years ago, yesterday, Hurricane Katrina roared ashore New Orleans, LA and changed the lives of millions, forever.  We were there, in Louisiana, and participated in one of the largest Animal Rescues ever mounted and to this day, we feel the pain, the sacrifice and the victories.  It has forever changed us, or better put, it has forever aged us.  We look at the world differently as technology has clouded our vision and given us a false feeling of control when in reality; Mother Nature sits in the driver’s seat and we are only passengers on the good ship, Planet Earth.  A good dose of reality, such as living through multiple, devastating hurricanes, leaves one with a broader perspective of where humans fit into the scheme of things and how we need to better tune our perceptions of nature and all that lives around us.  Prayers to the survivors of Laura, we know your pain.” ~ 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.

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