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 Texas : Features : Columns : N. Ray Maxie :

Dixie from Burke

by N. Ray Maxie
N. Ray Maxie
Are you looking to buy a mule? Angelina County Texas is the place to go. There seems to be a good population of mules there and historically, often found at reasonable prices, too.

Diboll, Burke or Lufkin, and maybe Huntington, Pollok or Hudson are the places to look. You won't have to go very far elsewhere. Someone around those areas can point you in the right direction. For years I had driven through that part of East Texas when I never was in the market for a mule. Then sometime in 2004 and '05, I began to start thinking I would like to have a young mule. Just one mule as a pet; to work with, train and maybe one day to ride, or have him pull a cart for me and the grand children.

Hours of searching newspaper ads eventually revealed what I was looking for. The mule I found was located in Burke, a short distance from the Angelina County Airport. I called the advertised phone number and learned he was one year old and the seller wanted $250. I arranged a time to go inspect this object of my dreams. Of course I had to prepare the back of my pickup to accommodate the hauling of a mule. Moving swiftly, that only took me part of the afternoon.

I was to leave the next morning for the two hour drive and had asked the seller to hold the animal for me. The reply was, "no guarantee" since mules were in big demand and the first with the money bought him. So I called again early the next day before leaving home. They still had him. Now, I just hoped he would be there when I arrived. And he was, except "he" was now a "she", a Molly Mule.

The seller said they had named her Dixie. That suited me just fine. Of course, Dixie is a good southern name and I looked her over real good. Her mother, a Tennessee Walker, was on site and that was a good observation.. After discussion and some negotation with the seller, I decided to offer $200.
Mule - Dixie
Dixie

They took the offer! I paid them $200. Now there arose another little problem. The side boards I had prepared on the back bed of my pickup weren't adaquate to haul this mule. She was a lot bigger than I had envisioned. So now, how was I to get this new-bought mule home with me?

The seller had an old two wheel trailer I could borrow. But, inspection of it indicated that it definately was not road worthy; a wreck waiting to happen.

Another great idea! There was a neighbor close by with a good truck and trailer that might just be willing to haul my mule for me; for a fee. Not free, but for a fee.

And he did! For $100 he hauled Dixie the mule here to Piddlin'Acres. All this seemed like a pretty good bargin; $300 to get Dixie home and into my pasture.

She has worked out really well. Has grown a lot and is so easy to train. My grand children have ridden her some and the cart is still under construction.


N. Ray Maxie
"Ramblin' Ray"
September 1, 2009 Column
piddlinacres@consolidated.net

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