John and I were walking home from school. The snow banks beside the road had dwindled down to sad dirty piles. The melting snow created a creek in what was usually an empty ditch. As we dawdled along watching the water and floating twigs in the stream we heard a horse and buggy approaching.
When we looked up we were surprised to see Mom driving Jim. She stopped beside us and we climbed on the buggy wondering where we were going to, since a ride home from school was unheard of unless it was raining.
It didn't take long for us to notice that Mom seemed sad. When we asked her what was wrong she said a man was coming by that evening to buy Jim, and that she had wanted to drive him for one last time yet before he left us.
John and I weren't happy to hear that we would have to sell Jim. Mom assured us he was going to go to a good home and that he deserved to spend the rest of his life in a nice place where he would no longer have to pull our heavy buggy up and down those long hills.
Once we got home Daddy came out of the shop to unhitch Jim. Mom stood there stroking Jim and talking to him for a long time and then turned to go to the house. Her cheeks looked wet from tears and that was the last straw for me. The sobs I had been trying to choke back came. I went to pat Jim's velvety nose and tell him good-bye. He had been our faithful horse ever since I could remember and the thought that he would no longer be in the barn or out in his pasture to welcome us with his gentle whinny was almost more than I could bear to think about.
I went to the house to help Mom prepare supper. After we had eaten we heard a truck and trailer pull into the driveway. Daddy went outside to help load Jim. When he came back inside we got ready for bed.
The following days seemed a little sad when ever we went to the barn and saw Jim's stall with out Jim there waiting for us. Several weeks later we got a picture in the mail of Jim in a nice green pasture. He looked happy and it made me feel a lot better to know that he really was doing fine.