LAWENDA

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3rd of February 2022 Update
Lawenda are safe!

Thank you wholeheartedly for saving Lavenda mother and her foal! They are already with us, on our farm, where, thanks to you, the next chapter of their lives begins today. This time it will be a happy story full of loving care, peace and juicy carrots. We are already looking forward to the fact that, after quarantine, the foal, under the watchful eye of his mother, will conquer the paddock and be amazed by the fast approaching spring. It’s all thanks to you!


Her Story:

I open the car window gently, a few dancing snowflakes blowing inside. As if they wanted to come with me. They don’t know where I’m going .. if they knew, the wind would probably turn them back. I look up and feel the chill rush in with the wind that paints the landscapes on the windows. We got a call a few days ago. The old mare, who had served people on the farm for many years, got her last ticket. She would have probably left a long time ago, but the elderly gentleman’s wife asked him to find another client for her. However, there is usually no queue for the old mare.

We have several kilometers left. Snow covered the world and you can’t see much in this part of Poland. But this is where the large-scale horse trade for slaughter happens. Because everything is cheaper here. This business, too. I glance over the area. Roads merge with vast fields. The wind gently blows the snow on all sides. But as if the wind didn’t want to change too much.

We pass few more woodlands, we pass forest paths covered with a diamond, snow carpet. Everything is sparkling and flickering. The morning mixes the gloomy aura with the fairy-tale of this place. I know we’ll be there soon. I know that even the snow will not arouse my admiration there. This is a place where nobody wants to go. But someone has to. Because no journalist ever reached such places.

We park under the old, wooden fence, which is still standing, against all ods. An elderly couple greets us. They have been trading horses since like….forever. They don’t care where the horses go from here. They are just a stop station on the way. With them, nothing begins and nothing ends. This is a transitional stage before the slaughterhouse.

I get out of the car, shake their hands quickly. We refuse the tea. We want to take photos and come back. It starts to snow more and more. Roads will be impassable in a moment. And this is the last place I would like to stay for longer.

 

 

The elderly gentleman leads us to a small barn. In a small room I meet Lavenda and her whole life. And her little foal. They stand as straight as a string to a string. They look at me closely, the foal even seems to be braver than the mother. But his courage won’t save him.

We listen to the story for a while. A trader bought a mare at a nearby market. Chickens, ducks, pigs, sheepskin coats and old boards, soap and jam for sale. She was also there, pregnant. His wife complained, so he called then, but nobody wanted to buy her back. Now, when the holidays are coming, his wife complains again. “These women are so whining, my dear lady, that there is no life. I would sell the mare, she would do well, but not with me, what the hell. But the wife insisted .. ”

Lawenda stands and stares at my lens. The old lady peers shyly through the door, I can see her in the corner of my eye. If it weren’t for her, we would never have gotten here. The tfoal cuddles up to his mother and looks at me as uneasily as the older woman. I take a few photos, stroke Lawenda on her warm nostrils. Their room is small. They don’t go out on the paddock. There is no pasture here. The yard is also small. If a horse passes the barn threshold, it’s only to climb up the gangplank.

An old lady comes up to me, stroking the Lawenda, making sure that her husband does not see it. She explains that after many years she also does not care. But the mother must not be slaughtered. It’s sacred.

Lawenda never counted on retirement. I don’t know where she worked or what she did, but horses are smart. Despite their illusions and hopes, they know that people pass sentences quickly. Someone kept her for years, multiplied and used it. Someone had given her a handful of oats and a roof over her head for years. And someone took her to the market. For no reason. Because old age should not be a reason, something that awaits each of us and is a natural course of life cannot be a reason …

 

I get in the car, we go back on the snowy roads. I don’t know if this snow will be lying here when you will be reading this story. It will probably be long after the first eastern star . Lavenda will not catch Santa Claus, and when they load her, it will be long after the New Year’s fireworks. Some old van will roll into the yard, there will be no noise. And in the morning, when the sun comes up, there will be nothing left. The world of Lavenda and her little one will be just a memory. The only hope is in you that they will not pass away together with the old year.