Teo - 'It's hard work eating and looking so pretty isn't it Neds?'
Naidu - 'Huh? Nom nom nom'Most horse people say that horses should have a job to do or they're wasted but I don't agree. If their physiological and psycho/social needs are met I've found them to be perfectly content without needing 'work' and I've yet to know a horse that chooses to leave the herd of its own accord to get tacked up and be ridden. As for being wasted I'm guessing that people mean they're not fulfilling their potential as a mount and although that's true I'd argue that they are fulfilling their potential as a horse instead. Either way the only reason that I don't ride them is because I'm physically unable to and this has been a source of great sadness and frustration for me because The Girls would have made great mounts.
I could have sold them at the first sign of my disability but I've known them since they were four months old and have owned them since they were weaned so to me the important thing is to ensure their welfare and life-long security. And I've had many happy therapeutic hours with them doing non-riding stuff like mutual scratching and sharing yucky green staining half chewed food substances and sticky brown treacle licks. They are very generous and do like to share.
Down at the stables they are well cared for and recently, much to their horror, we embarked on the process of riding them again. I say 'we' although the truth is I'm doing it vicariously. My new friends are like-minded, competent and committed and it's made me wonder if my dreams for The Girls may not be completely dashed. As with so many things in life, sometimes it's a case of finding another way.
It's a bitter-sweet situation for me in that it's lovely to see them learning and developing as riding horses but in truth it's hard to see someone else ride off on them. However I'm involved and that's wonderful and I'm optimistic that the electric bike might enable me to accompany them one day.
The Girls keep telling me that they haven't resigned from their official VCPFO roles and they thought they'd retired from this riding lark after that stint of a few months when they were youngsters. But I've told them of the beauty of the woodland ways,
and of the miles of beach to explore with their stablemates.I think they'll enjoy it.
Do I see horses to chase?
Is that a camera?
Wait, profile darling profile! This is my best side.
It's good to have old non-horsey friends who, in the face of much adversity (and the occasional insult when they didn't follow my instructions and for which I apologised profusely once the degree of injury was judged to be minor), worked hard for so long to help me to hang on to my shattered hopes. And it's good to have new horsey friends who've helped to brush the dust off my broken dreams and glue them back together again, admittedly into a different shape from the original but hey - who say's the original is always the best?