Beyond Bewilderment

Rubí writes her Tuesday blogue

I have spent the past eleven years being mostly bewildered. There was a Peasant who came to visit Matilde and me every weekend in the stables at Parcent, bringing carrots. We had not seen carrots before. Then one day we were loaded into señor Campo Gandara’s horsebox and we were driven a long way, arriving at the Peasant’s field in Finestrat. Then señor Campo looked at the Peasant’s fences and pronounced them insecure, so for the first week we lived in the Peasant’s house. He put down straw indoors for us. It was all bewildering. This was my first bewilderment, but there were many more bewilderments to come. I’m bewildered why my ears look longer in my shadow in the late afternoon sun.

I suppose bewilderment goes with the territory, as I’m a bit of an Eeyore sort of donkey. It is a good word, bewilderment. The Spanish for bewilderment is ‘desconcierto’ which is the opposite of being at a concert, a ‘concierto‘. That doesn’t quite cut it for me. When I feel bewildered, I never see it as a problem of not being at a concert. In fact, since I have never been to a concert, I would prolly find it bewildering anyway, so being bewildered by not being at a concert is prolly an oxymoron; and I’m sure any self-respecting ox would find himself bewildered at a concert, even if he was not a moron.

Anyway, one day ten years ago – I found that a foal had come out of me and was just standing there looking wet and surprised in the field. That was another big moment of bewilderment. I had no idea what it was. Then the Peasant called it Morris, but that only added to my bewilderment as I had no idea why a very small donkey in Spain should be called Morris. I skipped and danced and ran around the field playing with Morris for a whole year and it was a very nice time of not being bewildered. Then Morris grew up and began kicking everyone and stealing everyone’s food, so he wasn’t quite so much fun any more. I soon went back to being bewildered.

The Peasant moved us here to El Parral shortly after my birthday, six years ago, and this too was bewildering. It seemed like we were just out for a long walk, but at the end of the day we didn’t go ‘home’, and the Peasant said this was home now. This too was bewildering because ‘home’ is where you go back to, and we didn’t go back. But there are many other sources of bewilderment. I am bewildered by Aitana over there standing by the wall, stamping like a silly horse. The stamping is a new thing. She stamps every time she sees the Peasant appear without any food.

Now we have been here longer than the time we spent in the previous home, so it has finally become proper home and not bewildering. I am bewildered by Matilde, who is my best friend but sometimes bites me with no reason at all! I am bewildered that Morris no longer sees me as his mummy donkey and doesn’t follow me around all day as Aitana follows Matilde. I am bewildered that the Peasant feeds us later since he retired and didn’t have to get ready to go to teach at the school. And I am bewildered by squirrels. But everyone is bewildered by squirrels, so maybe that’s nothing to be concerned about.

I stood next to Matilde this afternoon, as we dozed on our feet in the sun. The temperature has risen to 27 degrees, which is nice after all the bewildering weeks of rain.

“Do you ever get bewildered?” I asked.

“What’s that?” replied Matilde.

I thought she might be more familiar with it in Spanish.

Desconcierto,” I said.

“I’ve never been to a concert,” she replied. “I wouldn’t know how it feels to not be at a concert when you were at some point at a concert.”

I thought about it for a while, before replying.

“No, I’m not bewildered either.”

Matilde bit me.

One thought on “Beyond Bewilderment

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