Her: We have a 15 year old exchange student from Japan coming to live with us for two months, Dear.
Me: Japan? Where's that? Does he speak English?
Her: Pffft! What do you mean where's Japan? And no he doesn't speak English.
Me: So what is he here for?
Her: He is here to have the full cultural experience of living with an American family and doing whatever they do day to day, going where ever they go, that kind of thing.
Me: Has he ever seen a horse or a mule? Does he like John Wayne?
Her: I don't know? Why don't you ask him yourself when he gets here?
Me: You know I'm going to make a mule-skinner out of him, don'tcha?
Her: Yes Dear.
His name is Yuya. Night number 2, we watched The Cowboys on the big screen. By the time it was over, he had learned that his favorite movie star was John Wayne, which he could declare with the coolest accent you ever heard. Ever heard a Japanese kid say "John Wayne?" You need to.
He began doing chores with Preston each morning and night starting on day one. He got so good at it, that we let him do it all by himself while Preston was gone for 3 days last week.
Then we dressed him up like the real deal and put him on Minnie Pearl. He asked for no quarter, and we gave him none. After 7 hours in the saddle Saturday doing everything we did from running in the flats, to scrambling over the ledges, he smiled and said he liked it. The next day, he said he wasn't saddle sore.
What a tough little buggar! What a great little mule.
Yuya and Minnie Pearl! Glad you came to stay. Gonna miss you when you leave...
|Dan Stephenson on the sweetest Tennessee Walking mule...|