Episode 017 Transcript

On Moose River Farm with Anne T. Phinney (Thanksgiving 2018)

KRISTEN RHOADES HORN: Hi, I'm Kristen Horn, owner and chief dognanny of Dognanny in Buffalo, New York. I thought I had the dream job until I learned about Anne Phinney and Moose River Farm. Here's a little bit more about that today on the Point of Learning podcast.

PETER HORN [voiceover]: On today’s Thanksgiving special: Anne Phinney, who has been crazy about horses for nearly as long as she can remember.

ANNE PHINNEY: There is some special moment when that enormous, that long face and those beautiful eyes and that gorgeous mane and for lock that grows out between the ears. It hits like a drug. I mean, it is like the first time that you take some kind of addictive drug that is going to affect you the rest of your life.

[VO]: These days at Moose River Farm, which she and her husband Rod run in the Central Adirondack region of upstate NY, Anne offers sessions in equi-reflection, opportunities to connect with horses in deep ways.

ANNE: You’ve heard the term breaking a horse. When we do that, we evoke fear and we make them fearful of us. But if we learn to use our body language to communicate with them the way that they communicate with each other, it is a powerful connection that is established between the horse and the person.

[VO]: For 25 years as an elementary and middle school teacher, some of Anne’s favorite moments in the classroom meant the difference between kids learning about animals and learning from animals …

ANNE: I can pull out a book and show them, okay, this is how you take care of an iguana, and we’re not going to have an iguana, but this is what you would do to take care of an iguana. It would certainly not have the same impact as going into the classroom and handling the iguana that you love so much. You know this animal. You go home to your dinner table at night and share stories about that animal with your family. Your family now becomes involved: “How is Spike today? What did he do? Did you get to walk him in the hallway?” The iguana has provided that extra extra nugget, that extra kernel that we are always looking for an education to really hook the kids together, to make them work together as a group and I'm so grateful for that experience.

[VO]: All this, plus my trek with two beautiful llamas through the woods, coming right up. So much to be grateful for! That I should make my way to Moose River Farm, about 50 miles north of Utica, NY, in the Adirondacks, was suggested to me by my friend and mentor Paula Roy, star of episode 003. I only needed to hear a little about what Anne had done with animals in her classroom before I was very interested in talking with her. But that was just the beginning! Anne has written a memoir about the fascinating journey from her childhood in Jenkintown, PA, just outside of Philly all the way to Moose River Farm with her husband Rod and their many chickens and geese, five llamas, two dogs, three goats, two donkeys, two tortoises, seven horses, and one glorious Vietnamese pot-bellied pig named Fiona. (You’ll hear from Fiona in just a minute.) In the memoir, Anne tracks her development from a girl who had a fairytale love of horses to an accomplished horseman, with deep knowledge as well as love of horses. When she was teaching at the Town of Webb School in the village of Old Forge, NY, she believed firmly in integrating animals into the class routines of students, holding that animals can be powerful co-teachers at least, and when it comes to learning empathy and compassion, maybe the best teachers. Anne’s book is called Finding My Way to Moose River Farm. Subtitled Living with Animals in the Adirondacks, it was published in 2013. (There’s a link on the show page, when you want to check it out.) To paint a picture of her routine in the barn each morning, I asked her to read from the end of the first chapter. Before she retired from teaching in June 2018, this is a glimpse of what she did each day before heading to school to work a full day with elementary or middle school students. As promised, a star player in this passage is Fiona, the Phinneys’ Vietnamese pot-bellied pig.

ANNE: “With my coats, boots, hat, and gloves in place, I’m also ready to go outside with Fiona. After her breakfast, she stops to clean up stray seed under the bird feeder. Then she and I make our way out to the barn. The cold air blasts our faces. I can’t wait until spring. I act as Fiona’s plow through the several inches of snow that have accumulated overnight. By walking first, I lower the height of the snow so her belly will not freeze. She grunts softly with each step she takes behind me.

“At the barn, I reach for the light switch, and am greeted by a high-pitched whinny from the last stall on the right. Sandi, a small Trakhener gelding, is hungry. He reminds me not to forget him back there in the far corner. Some of the other horses greet me with low rumbles, indicating that they too are hungry. I begin my ritual distribution of hay to each stall. This is when I make my daily inspection of each horse's condition, and appetite, indications of how they're feeling today. When I lift the lid on the grain bin, Fiona is at my side, as if on cue. She grinds her snout into my ankle, a signal for me to drop a handful of sweet feet on the floor for her. The horses’ grain is already pre-measured from the night before to save precious time and to assure prompt service. I am relieved to witness each horse dive into the grain with a healthy appetite.

“Next, I hear a soft bleating from the eleventh stall. Three goats jump up to peer over the door. They are hungry too. After feeding them their own ration, I close the bin. Fiona has finished her handful of grain and is now making her rounds, checking out the stalls of the horses who sling feed out of their bins. I hear her protest with high pitched squeals when Easau, a bay gelding, lowers his head to sniff at her.

“I check the clock to assure myself that I am still on schedule before I begin cleaning the first of ten stalls. Mucking stalls is, for me, a form of meditation at this hour of the morning, just ninety minutes before I begin my professional day. The mindless chore allows my thoughts to simmer as I plan for the coming hours at school. Before I know it, I am emptying the wheelbarrow on my final trip to the manure pile behind the barn. I check every water bucket to make sure it will last the morning and split up a flake of hay for the goats.

“‘Have a good day, my loves,’ I sing before turning off the light switch and heading back to the house.

“Fiona, who is still busy cleaning up bits of grain on the barn floor, begins to mumble in short contented grunts. Left in the dark, she trots to catch up with me. The bitter cold forgotten, I have had my barn fix, as satisfying as a hit that calms the hard-core drug user. The difference is that my dose results in an appreciative and healthy high.

“Across the driveway, I see the sun hoisting itself up over the trees. Its arrival begins earlier each morning now, a true sign the days are heading towards spring. A mourning dove calls overhead, breaking the eerie silence of the past three months. I smile thanks to God, who has blessed me with these gifts. I deeply appreciate where I am today on a beautiful horse farm in the Adirondack woods. My childhood dreams have come true. It is no accident that I am here. Years of hard work, determination, and blind faith have paid off. Still, I am amazed at how my life has turned out.” [pp. 12-13]

[VO]: Anne Phinney reading from the opening chapter of Finding My Way to Moose River Farm.

PETER: One of the experiences you offer here at Moose River Farm is called equi-reflection. What does that mean?

ANNE: Equi-reflection is a term that I coined because I feel like my whole life I have looked at my reflection in my interactions with horses. Equi-reflections, physically, are non-riding sessions with horses. The person remains with feet on the ground and they use their body language to interact and communicate with the horse. Horses seem to accept that we are not going to prey on them. Occasionally that predator fear surfaces: if we throw a saddle on a on a young horse that isn’t properly trained, and we tighten it up and we chase them around, if we try to break their spirit. You’ve heard the term breaking a horse. When we do that, we evoke fear and we make them fearful of us. But if we learn to use our body language to communicate with them the way that they communicate with each other, it is a powerful connection that is established between the horse and the person. Mine is not the only program. There are lots of people that are using this kind of interaction to provide therapy for people with post-traumatic stress—

PETER: I was going to ask, because I’m familiar with equine therapy, I mean I’m aware that it exists—not that I’ve seen it in practice. The idea is that the horse by its presence can—

ANNE: —soothe. Exactly. Well, I think that it’s that same ingredient that horses have that inspires girls to nurture them. Nurturing makes you feel good! The research shows that endorphins are released, including oxytocin, which is the love hormone. They make you feel good. So if you’re a person with post-traumatic stress or if you’re grieving the loss of somebody, if you are depressed … If we can provide a hiccup, an interruption in that devastating emotion that actually makes you feel good, there’s hope. All of a sudden, you have felt hopeful, and maybe it enables you to seek other therapies that can bring you out of your despair.

PETER: And the kind of communication that you would do … Is that touching. Is it eye contact?

ANNE: People who engage in equi-reflections learn the language of the horse. I put them in a position to be the head of the herd. I give them the tools that they need to be the head of a herd of horses, and those tools are expressed through their body. They are standing on their two feet. Now what I’m explaining comes several sessions in, and it really depends on how much horse experience you have. If you’re somebody who’s never been around horses, we’re not going to do this the first time. You’re going to learn how to handle them and just be in their space and not be fearful of them, to stand with them and understand that they’re going to move around. They’re living things, so they might move into you. They might move away, and for some people that’s several sessions: just being in the presence of the horse and trying to calm your fear of them. You’re not a leader if you’re fearful of them, so we can’t go to the next step until we break through that. Eventually, what I am trying to get people to the point of being able to do is to go into my arena with the horse loose, and they are going to kick up the energy between them and the horse. So to do that, they either take a lunge whip, which makes a cracking sound, or a big plastic bag, and they chase the horse around the ring. It’s very playful. It’s galloping and the horse is. It’s playful. It’s sheer joy. They are reacting because horses react to loud sounds and snapping, so we’ve raised this energy level—

PETER: But your horses are also well trained enough to know that they’re not really trying to scare them or hurt them.

ANNE: Exactly. However, this is something that would work with a horse who’d never had this done before. So I try to convey that it’s not really a training thing. We’re just tapping into—and as much as I love horses, their brain isn’t that big! And so it’s not really a training thing. We are getting them to react by encouraging them to do natural behaviors. But what they are simulating when they stand in the middle of the ring and they chase the horse, they're simulating a wild herd. What happens in wild herds. Wild herds are mares and babies. They have one stallion that protects this band and he’s just on patrol. He’s just making sure that there’s nobody else coming in to steal his girls. But the family unit is down in the mare and babies, and one of those mares will be the head mare. If there’s a little baby, a—usually it’s a male, a little stud colt who’s misbehaving (mounting other mares, kicking at mares, kicking other babies), the lead mare will take it over. The head mare will take it upon herself to chase him on the perimeter of the herd. Well, it’s dangerous out there! So that’s what we’re simulating. We’re keeping the animal moving and we're not allowing him to connect with us. That’s what this mare and the wild herd is doing. She keeps him out there. It’s like discipline time-out. But it’s scary out there! If you're not behaving yourself, we won’t protect you and you're not allowed back in here. So that’s what we do out in the ring. We just keep the horse chasing around. And eventually what happens is the horse starts to signal some things. They’ve turned their ear in towards the person. They’re looking, they’re trying to read. As soon as the person chasing sees the ears start to turn towards them, you know that you have their attention. So now you have to concentrate on your body language. And so, what I instruct people to do is you have to stay. You have to be a leader. You have to stand straight and look confident. You can’t do this [slouches] and you have to maintain eye contact with them. Just keep looking at there and until they are really looking at you. You get an ear, then you get licking and chewing. You can really see the horse: they lick their lips and they’re chewing and you can see that in their profile as they go around. I’m really simplifying. There is really a lot more to this, but these are the big moments, the milestones in the session. Then the horse will eventually start looking at the person with two eyes. They’ll be galloping around, but they keep turning their head. And at that point we reduce the energy. We “quiet the whip,” I say, or quiet the bag, and you just wait. Some horses will gallop around for another minute or so, but eventually they slow down and they stop, and they turn and they face the person and they will walk to the person. It is a magical moment. I get choked up when I talk about it. People are not prepared. This prey animal walks over to them. They completely understand, “Okay, I’m safe with you. You are going to protect me. You are the leader.” And the horse will come over and stand with the person. The person touches them, feels them, smells them. It’s a connection. It’s a connection that is so beautiful. It’s not like the connection with your dog. Dogs are liars. They love us no matter what. They’re not looking for body language. They just want to be all over us. They don’t care what kind of day we’ve had. This horse is an animal who’s reading, who’s saying, “Okay, I trust you. I can trust you now.” And that’s a very powerful moment, and from that moment on, the horse stands at the person's side. They walk around in the ring together. The horse follows them. It’s very amazing and I have seen children, they carry this with them in their daily lives. They work with this big animal, and the animal bonds with them. They walk around and then they’re able to take those skills into their relationships with humans. It really does have a profound effect. It doesn't replace traditional therapies, but it takes that human worry “Can I trust you?” If a horse walks over to you? I mean, nothing says “I trust you” more than the horse approaching and then you being able to lead the horse with no lead. I mean there’s no lead rope.

PETER: And then by extension that you are trustworthy.

ANNE: You are worthy, you are worthy and, and people feel good. I tell people my only goal is to make you feel good, to make you leave here with a big smile on your face and know that you did something: you communicated with an animal that we are really not designed to communicate with!

PETER: At one point in your book Finding My Way to Moose River Farm, you write about your high school English teacher, Mrs. Mosley, who seemed to know you well. She knew you loved to write, she knew you loved your horse Promise, and at a critical point she asked whether it might be possible to bring that horse to college with you, a transformative suggestion for you at that point in your life. Because this is a show that, among other things, seeks to honor the vocation of teaching, I like to ask guests about a teacher who had a strong impression on you.

ANNE: Mrs. Mosley was the most interesting Quaker lady, and I only bring up Quaker because my education was at a Quaker school, and she was a Quaker teacher. She was the most down-to-earth … a very sophisticated, intelligent woman, but a woman also who lived very simply. And I remember that’s what made an impression upon me. She was not a woman who needed to have makeup to be beautiful. And yet I thought she was the most beautiful woman that I’d ever met, because she was just so lovely, so inspiring, so caring. Really cared about me. And I’ve never forgotten her. In fact, I just heard from her maybe two or three years ago. About my book. Somebody—one of my classmates must have gotten my book, and because they still belong to the same Quaker meeting as Mrs. Mosley, they were able to give it to her, and she wrote me the loveliest letter. She remembered! I guess this is what made her a wonderful teacher: She remembered me. We’re talking 45 years later. She certainly had lots of students, but she remembered this horse-crazy teenager who was so fearful about leaving, going off to college without a horse. And she was probably the most real person that I ever knew at the time, at a time when girls are meeting lots of people who are not real. And girls are trying to be somebody other than who they are supposed to be. It’s a theme in my life now, and it’s always been a theme for me as a teacher to just be a real person, not try to be something to impress people. Just be your real self. And I owe that to Mrs. Mosley for sure.

PETER: Would you be willing to read a passage?

ANNE: Sure. Okay. “My friends were prettier, skinnier, and more athletic than I was, a typical teen sentiment, as I now know. But all this changed when I was with horses. With horses I exited the prison of my psyche and physique. With horses I enjoyed being in the company of creatures who didn’t care about my appearance. With horses, I was happy. I inhaled their wonderful aroma, ran my fingers through their plush coats, and brushed my lips across the soft spot between their nostrils. Horses soothed the frustration I felt at home. I lived in the moment only at the barn and spent the rest of my time counting the hours and minutes until I could return.” [p. 17]

PETER: Your relationship with horses was central to your development. In another spot you said, “At a time when many girls experience a sense of self-loathing, horse ownership elevated my self-esteem.” [p. 40] You refer to “the incredible relationship between girls and horses.” [p. 104] Unquote. As the husband of someone who was also a little “horse crazy” when she was young, and who even today has a soft spot for wallets, t-shirts, and bookmarks emblazoned with horses, I wanted to ask what it is about girls and horses. Can you share your take about what’s likely to be more special for girls than boys?

ANNE: I think it’s two things. I think first of all, horses bring out the nurturing abilities in young girls. Nurturing is something that I think is more on the surface in women than it is in men, and when you have a young child who loves animals in general, there is some special moment when that enormous, that long face and those beautiful eyes and that gorgeous mane and forelock that grows out between the ears. It hits them like a drug. I mean it is like the first time that you take some kind of addictive drug that is going to affect you the rest of your life. That’s the first thing, that nurturing component component, but it grabs hold of them because they’re not really old enough to nurture a child, or to nurture and take care of something all by themselves—

PETER: I like that you said that it was closer to the surface because of course this nurturing aspect is something that culturally gets reinforced more easily with with girls than it is with boys. It’s certainly possible with boys, but boys don’t get to have that part of them honored. It’s the part that’s like, you know, breaking stuff and hitting things with 2x4s, that’s the part that we acknowledge—a little bit rough and ready—

ANNE: And girls take care.

PETER: They show this aspect and they’ve had it reinforced, and then they have this place where they are ready and receptive with this beautiful big animal.

ANNE: That’s the second thing. This is a large, powerful animal, and girls who are addicted to them learn very quickly that you can tame and keep this animal calm, and that it really wants to be with you. Horses are gregarious; their relationship with us really shouldn’t work. They are a prey animal. They should be terrified of us coming up at them with our bi-scopic eyes that are really predator-like, and yet they want to be with us. They’ve chosen to be with us. Now present that to a girl. You can be with this animal, you can ride it, you can take care of it, you can brush it, and that’s caring for something. That’s the first little seeds of their future as nurturers, or teachers, or whatever they choose to be when they’re interacting with other people. It builds compassion, builds empathy. But in a natural way. We've provided young girls with the animal and the relationship; the horse does the rest. The horse creates this lure, and girls are just drawn to that.

[VO]: Sidebar: Trek in the Adirondacks with Some Beautiful Llamas.

ANNE: These are the ones that we trek with. I’ve started a trekking business, and people come and walk llamas in the Adirondacks!

PETER: So the guys stay separate?

ANNE: Llamas have a very interesting reproductive cycle. The females don’t come into heat. It’s the presence of the male that brings them into season, so that means that the boys will pester and pester and pester them and it’s just—I have to give the girls break!

PETER: So you have people come and then they go for walks?

ANNE: Yep. We would put a lead rope and they walk in the woods—

PETER: Is it a trail that—

ANNE: In fact we can do it. It’s actually not raining right now. I would be more than happy to take you on a llama trek. You’ve never experienced anything like it!

[VO]: As a public service reminder, I’d like to state that Point of Learning does not endorse goods or services we don’t believe in. So if this mini-segment on the llama walk seems a tiny bit infomercial, here’s the deal: to me, walking a llama on Moose River Farm is like having the chance to hang out with a unicorn. I know. Pretty cool.

PETER: So South America, so do they do any of the famous water storage that camels are known for?

ANNE: No. They do conserve water, but the thing about camels: people believe that camels are desert animals and that whole water thing, but actually they are harsh weather animals. They can deal with bitter cold and very, very warm climates. Lots of water / no water. The camel’s adaptation is that hump that’s just made of fat, and fat stores water. Though this animal doesn’t have that adaptation.

VOICEOVER: The Moose River Farm website is handy on the show page for this episode or at mooseriverfarm.com. One word.

ANNE: Oh, they’re just eager to get back to the barn. The barn’s right around the corner.

PETER: Yeah, I imagine it’s not comfortable. It does get wet, probably.

ANNE: Well they don’t feel it down to the skin. Their hair’s so thick, so it protects them against wind and wet. That’s why they do so well in the Andes.

PETER: Congratulations on your recent retirement after 25 years! As an educator, I was struck reading the parts of Finding My Way to Moose River Farm where you talked about the animals that you brought into the classroom and how you used them to enliven the curriculum. So when you brought animals into the—I think it was sixth grade you were teaching when you started—you made a conscious choice not to go for the cute and cuddly kind but you chose instead to begin with iguanas and rats, whom you called “inspiring teachers” for your students. What kinds of things did the animals teach your students?

ANNE: I was not prepared for the lessons that the animals were going to come up with. That was such a joy to watch, because I was even surprised, but probably the most important lesson that they taught was how to work together. How the students could work together to care for the animal, how to parent. They wanted to parent the animals. They wanted to protect, to provide for them. They wanted to research and learn how to take care of them so that they would live a long time, and live a healthy, happy life under the care of the students. That isn’t something I can teach. I can pull out a book and show them, “Okay, this is how you take care of an iguana. And we’re not gonna have an iguana, but this is what you would do to take care of an iguana. It would certainly not have the same impact as going into the classroom and handling the iguana that you love so much. You know this animal, you go home to your dinner table at night and share stories about that animal with your family. Your family now becomes involved: “How was the iguana today?” Our first iguana was named Spike. “How was Spike today? What did he do? Did you get to walk him in the hallway?” I mean, these are lessons that I didn’t teach. My lessons were more about the care, and what we have to do and I’m picking the person who was going to walk them in the hall that day or who was going to wash out their dishes or wash the tray that they went to the bathroom on. That was my job. But the iguanas provided that extra nugget, that extra kernel that we are always looking for in education to really hook the kids together, to make them work together as a group and I’m so grateful for that experience, because it wasn’t one I was really planning on, but that was a pleasant surprise.

PETER: Did you find that the kids sometimes developed connections with the animals that they did not so easily develop with people, with their classmates or with adults?

ANNE: Definitely. Yes. I think I can relate to that because I had that same experience with horses. I felt very comfortable in the presence of horses. I didn't worry about what I looked like. I didn't fret about the clothes that I was wearing, but I was interacting with something that I knew enjoyed me being there. We could argue: do they love people? And I know that love is a strong word. I realize it’s a human word, but they certainly were reacting to my actions, and it made me feel good, and I think that’s what children get from working with animals, or being around animals. They make them feel good because they come to them, they come into their space, they curl up on their lap, they relax when the child holds them, they give feedback to the children that they are worthy and that they, they are glad to be spending time with them.

PETER: At one point you said you learned more in the barn about teaching than in any education class. How do you think your understanding of animals has enhanced your ability to connect with students? (I’m actively resisting jokes about the less than fully domesticated aspects of middle school students, the thought of whom in class-sized groups would terrify me as a high school teacher!) What is it?

ANNE: Patience. With all animals: if you come at them with both barrels loaded and you shove all this information at them from your human point of view, you’re going to create a terrified animal who is not going to learn—can’t learn! Who is so concerned about what’s going to happen to them with this predator out of control. You can train them that way, but you will train them through fear. And that’s more explosive, more dangerous. The horse that’s trained from a fearful point of view—smacked when they do something wrong, or yelled at when they do something wrong. You might train them and get the point across, but they’ll never be relaxed around you. I think that’s how children learn too. Now, have I made mistakes? Oh certainly! But I can always relate to a fearful animal when I’m working with a child. Children need to know exactly what you expect from them. Horses need to know exactly what you’re asking. What do you want me to do? If I’m riding a horse and I ask them with my body to go from the walk to the trot and they don’t know what that means, then I might end up using a crop and smacking them and now there’s a fear involved, and do something! Just go faster and maybe that’s what she wants. That’s not the same thing as just waiting. Making sure that they understand exactly what your body is asking them to do. Well, our students are the same.

PETER: Sometimes they buck in response to that, right?

ANNE: That fear, what else can I do? I have to react somehow. I’m fearful and I’m afraid of you. I never wanted students to feel that way. I wanted them to know exactly what my expectations were. I wanted them to know what it would look like when they had completed it, how they would know that they had had succeeded and I needed to be patient to wait for them to process all of that.

[VO]: Among the lessons Mrs. Phinney’s classroom animals taught was that death happens. When one of the rats would need to be put down, for instance, it was an honor for two of her students to be selected to bring the animal across the street to the vet. I asked Anne to tell me a little about that.

ANNE: Death is going to happen to everybody. It’s the end of a life, and we as humans are actually— We can cope with it. It’s not the end of the world for us. It’s very sad. It’s devastating. It’s all these emotions, but it’s also in honor of the one who needs to die. The rat who is suffering right now. I love the saying, “We have to take her pain and make it our own.” That’s what we need to do when we take the responsibility of any animal. I have this small moment of melancholy when a puppy arrives at the house, or a new goat, or a new horse, when a new animal arrives on our property, because we keep them until the last day. There is this moment of, you know, at some point, I will be saying goodbye to you, but I can’t control it. I can’t make that not happen, so I have to accept it and I think that having animals, being closely involved with them, loving them so much … It’s going to come to an end, but you’re going to have the opportunity to get through with what you have: the coping skills. These children, when they took the rat to the vet, they would come home back to the classroom. They would tell the other children what had happened. There was healing there, there were tears, there was sadness, there was grief, but in a couple of days they had worked through that. That’s coping.

PETER: Loss is, of course, a central part of what we have to contend with as human beings. But some kids, of course, by the time of sixth grade, haven’t necessarily contended with losing a grandparent or a dog or whatever it’s going to be. Do you have a sense that this smaller experience with death helped to prepare a little more?

ANNE: Oh, I’m sure. I’m certainly not going to say that the death of the rat is even close to the loss of a grandparent, but I think that it did awaken those emotions. It awakened the process of grief, and it showed them that they can get through on the other side. And on the other side of grief are memories and smiles. Wonderful feelings when you remember the events that you had with that rat or person. So I think none of us are ever going to avoid a lifetime … without loss, so when there are opportunities to experience it safely and and with the ability to talk about it, express your feelings about it. You can’t ask for more than that.

[VO]: I can't ask for more than a podcast project that puts me in contact with people like Anne Finney, let alone the dozens of beautiful animals I spoke with, petted, hugged, and walked on a magical afternoon last month. As Anne says at the end of her book, “Moose River Farm is more than a physical space. It is a lifestyle, a church, and a state of mind.” Peace of bounds here, “and all that is bad in the world is dominated by all that is good.” [p. 258] Amen. And Happy Thanksgiving to everybody! My great thanks to Anne and Rod Phinney for showing me around their amazing home. All the animal sounds featured on the episode came from residents at Moose River Farm, with the exception of Fiona’s solos, which were voiced by a stunt pig working on YouTube. Speaking of YouTube, the video versions of episodes are not always available as soon as the audio, because they take longer to produce. This one, however, I couldn’t resist making at the same time, so check it out to see what these glorious animals look like. Better yet, schedule a visit to Moose River Farm, that’s mooseriverfarm.com. Special thanks to Jason Grant for his guitar music on this episode, and thanks as always to Shayfer James for theme musics. I give thanks also to you for listening, sharing, discussing as a faculty—I’m looking at you, Goshen!—and subscribing to, and rating this podcast. Please take just a second to do that now—five stars!


Peter Horn