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I left the office party late on Christmas Eve. The party had been held at a little Inn out in the country. Since the drive home was thirty minutes, I elected not to have more than one glass of wine the entire evening. I was drinking peppermint tea before I left. The snow was coming down hard and accumulated during the evening. Not being overly familiar with the area, I nearly missed a turn and took it too fast. The car slid on the fresh snow into the ditch. I tried to get out of snowy ditch by putting the car in forward then reverse to get enough traction. However, it just would not work. So here I am stuck in the ditch on a cold snowy Christmas Eve night.
I got out to look the situation over. The car had slid far enough so the frame was on the ground. No wonder I couldn’t get the wheels to get traction. I kicked the car tire in frustration but only succeeded in hurting my toes. They were starting to feel numb from the cold. I was not dressed for playing in the snow either. There was no way I could push the car out by myself. Fortunately, I had my trusty cell phone to call for help. I called a tow service to come to my rescue, but it would be about forty-five minutes before they could get to me. I wasn’t the only traveler to get stuck in the snow tonight.
The snow was lovely as it fell silently on the countryside. I was angry at myself for not being more careful while driving. I was standing outside the car by a fence that ran the length of the field next to the road. Suddenly I saw a large white shape coming out of the snowy night. The shape was a white horse. It walked to the fence and reached out to me with its nose. The horse’s breath gave me an immediate feeling of warmth. I reached out to scratch its ears. The horse leaned in to me. I felt a peace I had not felt since getting into the car on that snowy night. The large body gave me warmth and blocked the wind blowing the snow.
I found a piece of peppermint candy in the car and gave it to my new friend. The horse took the treat gently from my hand. It then rubbed its head on my shoulder. I stayed outside the in the snow next to the horse while I waited for the tow truck to arrive.
As the truck drove up I left my new friend to talk to the driver and pay for the tow out of the ditch. I got into the car to drive it while the truck pulled it, and got out when I was back on firm roadway. I thanked the driver and turned back to the fence to say goodbye to my horsey friend. To my surprise the horse was gone into the snow the same way it had appeared. I drove on home with a wonderful feeling, realizing that horse had given me a gift by making me feel better about an unpleasant situation. I remember my Grandmother telling me how animals know what humans are feeling. They will try to aid you when you are feeling blue. Well, she was right on this night as that horse made me feel so much better.
This story might not seem so significant except for what happened afterward. After the holidays, I had occasion to drive out that way. The snow had melted and I thought I would take my horse friend a little treat. As I drove to the spot of my night in the ditch, I did not see a fence on that corner. In fact, there was not a fence on either side. Furthermore, there were no horses to be seen anywhere around the area. I thought maybe I had the wrong intersection but I could see the skid marks on the side of the road and could see the spot where my car had rested on the ground. I knew this is the right place. Did I dream the whole incident? Did I imagine the horse coming to comfort me? Had my eyes played tricks on me about a white horse coming out of the snow to rub on me and give me comfort?
When I got back home that day I convinced myself I’d dreamed it while sitting in a car stuck on the side of the road. That was until a few days later. I pulled the coat I was wearing that night out of the closet. There on the coat were a few hairs of white hair stuck to the coat. It wasn’t a dream but a wonderful Christmas miracle.
The moral to the story is please give a hug to your horse, dog, cat, or other pet after reading my story. Merry Christmas to all and especially to our furry friends who give us comfort throughout the year.

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