Open pastures

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Today we hoist our colors on Sweden’s official national day. A blue roan Nokota horse running free on a meadow among yellow buttercups is a nice way to illustrate this day.

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When we opened up the gate to the summer pasture the horses did not hesitate like last year, they knew exactly what to do. There is no better joy for a horse than to run free with friends in a big pasture loaded with a smorgasbord of two feet high fresh grass of many different species.

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The feeling to stretch out in a powerful gallop with a mouthful of grass is heaven for these freedom loving horses. To graze peacefully knowing the supply of delicious plants is endless, on a beautiful summers day is indescribable and they are smiling from ear to ear.

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After four hours of grazing, Bluebell slowly walks up to the stable for some water and then she chooses a place in the shade for an afternoon nap, but shortly changes her mind and walks back down to Windflower and Wild Prairie Rose for some more grazing.

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Sweden’s national day, the sixth of June, was established 1983 but has been an official holiday for only eight years. It was the date on which our first king Gustav Wasa was crowned in 1523 and Sweden became an independent country (even if our southernmost and northernmost states was not included). Some governmental and constitutional changes made in 1809 and 1974 on the same date may also be the reason this day was selected.

Our national day is not like other countries national days; we are generally not very patriotic about it. A day characterized by a contrived celebration of a nation’s borders? There must be better reasons to celebrate; ask any horse if she pefers closed or open fences.