Friday, 6 May 2011


Hello all, it's been a strange week, as my computer finally bit the dust on Tuesday morning. I pressed the 'on' button and it promptly sank into the computer, never to be seen again. Fortunately, Mr O was on the case and ordered us a new one. I think he realises what a lifeline my laptop is, as I hardly see any real life human beings from one day to the next, and this reallly is my means of communication with the outside world.
We had a few frustrations over the Easter holidays. Mr O should have gone showjumping at Marchington, but it was cancelled 'due to lack of entries.' As you don't have to pre-enter the showjumping, we found this rather odd, but decided to look on the bright side as it would give Zak's wound time to heal up completely before he goes in the lorry again. Then, on the same day, the organiser of a TREC competition I was going to rang up to say that that was also cancelled due to lack of entries. I felt like saying, "Yes, but I wanted to do it!" Grrr!
So I felt totally deflated, as once you know a competition is imminent, the adrenaline starts to stir. I put a comment on facebook about my disappointment, and Leigh, who now owns Max (my old horse) said to come over with Barnaby and go for a ride. I was absolutely thrilled, and immediately accepted, so on the bank holiday that's what we did. I got Barnaby in, gave his tail a wash to spruce him up a bit, and off we went.
Their farm has a long driveway, but as we trundled along, we could hear Max whinnying from his stable, as he clearly recognised the sound of the lorry, even though he hasn't heard it for a year. Isn't that amazing?
I unloaded Barnaby and took him over to meet Max. They knew each other instantly. Barnaby looked as if to say, "Where've you been, you scruff?" But actually Max looked stunning. All the mane that Barnaby chewed off last year has grown back and he has these flowing locks and looked immaculate.
We tacked up and set off, going through a woods, then onto what I can only call 'some land.' It wasn't fields, it was just land with tracks all over it. I was in front (of course!) and Leigh kept giving me directions and we just kept going. It looked as though it went on for miles. If I'd been on my own I'd have got totally lost.
As we continued there was a little tiny log on the floor so I asked Barnaby to go over it. It was so small it wasn't worth the effort of cantering and he just trotted over it, but I was really pleased. Then a bit further on there was another one, slightly bigger, so I asked him to go over it and he cantered this time. Then came another even bigger one which we jumped cleanly. It was fantastic. I knew I'd have the nerve to jump him outside, because it's straight lines. He was beautiful though, his neck stayed straight up in front of me and he felt rock solid, not like when we show jump in the arena and he puts his head between his knees and tanks round. I was so pleased with him, I was quite high when I got back.
We got back to the yard and Leigh asked if I'd like to ride Max so I agreed. Last time I was quite nervous about doing it and think I just watched her, but this time I had no nerves at all and got straight on (leaving Leigh to hold Barnaby, who kept trying to get down and roll in the lovely sand!)
It felt very strange riding this horse who I owned for six years and felt such kinship with. Firstly he felt very small compared to Barnaby. This was quite a shock, as I never felt underhorsed when I owned him. Then I thought the saddle was too small, even though it was my own saddle. I've obviously spread out to accommodate Barnaby's bulk! In the end I rode with no stirrups and he was fine. He just seemed such a sweetheart, a compact ball of muscle, and he does have the sweetest face, he hasn't changed at all really. I do think he's totally happy there though, and Leigh has done a fantastic job on him, as in some of her photos from a recent show he is totally on the bit and looks amazing.
Of course, eventually we had to load Barnaby in the lorry, and it was a bit of a tear-jerker as the two horses didn't want to leave each other. They were such brothers, you see. Although Zak and Barnaby are now an item, they aren't as faithful as Max and Barnaby were, they were such loyal boys. If anyone picked on Max in the field, he used to go to Barnaby and tell him, and Barnaby used to go and sort them out, both at Lorna's and here. This is why I've waited so long to let them see each other again.
Mr O did take some photos, but I can't put them on until we've loaded the camera software on this new computer.
I just want to say, it's great to be back, even though it's only been a week, I've really missed my little blogworld. I'm off now to catch up on all your news...
and getting ready for a TREC competition tomorrow, the first one I'll be doing on my own. Am I nervous? You better believe it!
Back soon,
Mrs O.


  1. Oh wow Jane, it sounds as though you had great fun visiting your friend, so glad the horses were so happy to see one another again. With hugs Shirleyxxxx

  2. What a great way to spend the day. Cute about the two boys remembering each other like that. Just goes to prove horses are a lot more intelligent and sensitive than many people realize.

  3. Horses do remember each other Madeline was stabled opposite a coloured youngster at our first livery yard, they never seemed to fond of each other but when she turned up at our last place she immediately went over to her to say hello and they fell into the mutual grooming at once.


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