Molly McMule’s Horse Tales - 1001 Stall Stories
Miles of Mules
“Summmmmerrrrrrrrrrrrtime, and the living is easy
Fish are jumpppppin’ and the cotton is high …”
Molly was in a rare mood, singing away in her best braying manner. It just seemed to be the right thing to do on this lazy, hot summer day. All the stable mates reflected her mood as they tried to stay cool, splashing in the creek, and generally having a good time.
Ginny was neighing along, and wondered just what prompted Molly to sing that particular song.
“Oh, I was thinking about my ancestors who worked the canal routes a long time ago when summer wasn’t really so easy for them. But, it seems like someone finally decided it was time to recognize their efforts - and it will make for some summer fun,” Molly replied.
“Who? How?? Doesn’t seem like it will be an easy assignment. After all, just how could you celebrate the ‘mule’? Even though they did play such an important part in industrializing much of Pennsylvania, where and how would you start?” Ginny asked, puzzled, waiting for Molly to tell her more.
“It takes someone with a good sense of humor and a great idea to make it work. Someone back in 1998 in Zurich, Switzerland, decorated cows and scattered them throughout the country. It was such a success and so much fun that the idea has spread.”
“Real cows??” gasped Ginny.
“Nohohoho!” hee-hawed Molly. “Statues.”
“Hmmm, so you think someone could do that with mules?” Ginny asked.
“Not only do I think so, I know so. And it will be fun for vacationers to look for the mules along the Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor. They will be placed at different spots along the way, extending from Scranton to Bristol,” Molly said. “And what’s more, they are life-size sculptures. There will be ‘Miles of Mules’.”
By this time Oley, Desi and some of the other stable mates had started to take an interest in the quiet conversation that Ginny and Molly were having. Naturally Desi quipped that ‘it would be fun to see a statue of a mule for a change’.
“And,” said Molly, “these mules will have a lot of character.”
“Character?” mocked Oley. “Like who or what? Mules are mules. I realize they have their own personal traits, but a mule by any other name is a mule,” he teased Molly.
“Well, you just won’t believe what these artists have come up with. When it comes to decorating them, the sky’s the limit. And that’s not all. Not only have the artists come up with great ideas, but even school children have gotten into the act.”
“So give us an example,” Desi said.
“Well, let me think. There are so many … as a matter of fact, about 150 of them. They have even been given names. So for example, there’s the Chairman of the Barge and he’s black, decorated with drawings of tiny chairs in bright colors. Blossom kind of speaks for herself. So does Mulevis - guess who provided the inspiration for that one - Elvis, of course.”
“Oh, I see,” said Desi. “That’s where the character comes in.”
“Right,” said Molly.” And there’s a lot more - Mr. Muletini, the party animal; Capshaw, decorated with lots and lots of bottle caps; and too many more to mention.”
“All right, then” said Oley. “So it might be fun for tourists and the locals to explore the region and see what else the artists had in mind. Meantime, I’ll just go back to the creek and think about staying cool.”
Molly says, it will be a ‘cool’ trip if you can make it this summer, and if not, visit your internet sites to get some more information and some pictures. Try www.milesofmules.org and links. Have a ‘mule’ of a summer!