It All Began And Ended On A Mountain

I have the answer!! Mom told me where I got the nickname Spivey!!

I was born in East Tennessee the place I call my first and forever home, and lived in a little town named Erwin, which is nestled in the Appalachian Mountains with a breathtaking view of these splendid icons.

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Growing up we (my siblings and I) took advantage of the beautiful view by ignoring the scenery coming and going to home, school, “town”, walking to the barn taking care of the livestock (yes my farm life days), every day living, doing chores or just by standing / sitting on our front porch.  One particular mountain decorated with natures glory stood out to my dad.  Low and behold that mountain had a name – Spivey  – (Spivey Mountain, TN).  Mom said she’s not sure where Jane came from probably the name he stuck with Spivey.

I have so many enduring and not so enduring memories of growing up on Clear Branch…(still in Erwin and surrounded by Spivey Mountain)…

My first true love – RoEllen Red, the most beautiful Quarter Horse I had ever laid eyes on.  She was three years old never been ridden and dad somehow obtained her either through a trade or bragging rights.  Who knew – my dad was a jack of all trades a master of none!

When he unloaded that beauty, it was love at first sight.  I never wanted something so badly to call my own like I did that horse.  Secret, I was terrified of horses!

Dad always had horses around….”Chief Joshua” an Appaloosa, the namesake of my brother, a stud horse used for breeding, his pride and joy, faithful buddy.

One particular summer a new guy was being introduced to the horse family, Caleb a gelded Quarter Horse.  Needless to say, Josh horse was having absolutely no part of any other horses coming on the property (unless a mare-female) and especially another male.  Caleb could not longer breed, no longer interested this shouldn’t be a problem.  I watched daddy (from a far) unload Caleb and walk him into the barn. Josh horse was on the other side of the closed barn door snorting, blowing, stomping, pacing back and forth making sure EVERYONE was aware of his presence…

Dad aware but had a plan, on a mission, continued walking Caleb through the barn flung open the door Josh was behind and turned Caleb loose out in the field. Oh the rage, fury, steamed hatred of that stud horse was beyond explosive.  There I stood in bewildered shock watching these two magnificent creatures fight with all the power in their bodies.  I’m somewhere between the ages 8-10, stricken with petrifying fear wanting to run.  Dad managed by himself to separate the horses, get them in the barn and immediately started examining them.  Robin! he yells, get over here.  Oh God, please no! Yes, weakly spoken, Take this horse and walk him! No I said, I will not! Take this horse and walk him.  Again I said NO!  Well needless to say that did not end pleasant for me, and yes my dad believed in and practiced a good earned spanking and that’s exactly what I got plus walked that horse.  I’m crying, numb, scared of this beast towering over me doing my best walking a limping, hurting just as numb horse.  I couldn’t feel sorry for Caleb only pain and anger for myself.  I’m sure if that horse could speak, he would have said the same thing.  From that day on I vowed to never have anything to do with a horse or “hang out” at the barn AGAIN…

I stayed true to my vow for a good 3-5 years until the day RoEllen came into my heart. She was suppose to be dad’s horse but I had different plans for her.  She became my best friend, confidant, free spirit and cowgirl dream.

My momma named her from an unknown area in west TN – Ro Ellen, Tennessee. Factoid – I have lived as far North, South, East and West of Tennessee without ever leaving the state.  I’ll let you in another amusing tale – even though momma didn’t get to name her children, she did get the privilege of naming all the animals!!

So there you go! A country girl with a country mountain nickname.



7 thoughts on “It All Began And Ended On A Mountain

  1. Love love love this story mom. You should write about all your adventures with RoEllen and how use to run up from behind her, jump on and take off bareback. Or having to check the bear traps…. trying to figure out which bunny you were having for dinner. Or you could write about paps…. oh lord the many stories you could tell… like him trying to be the headless horseman hahaha so many memories and stories to pick from. Love you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The mystery is solved!!! It makes sense, too. The horse story was great. When I was a kid I wanted nothing more than a horse of my own. That wasn’t possible, but I was able to take dressage for a few years. Now I live across from a horse farm andv my living room windows face the pasture. I get to see the horses and I don’t have to muck out stalls!

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  3. Pingback: The Robin's Nest

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