This is my new blog to continue my journey with my Dales Ponies. It will also be the story of my building a new life for myself, alone now, except for my friends, horses and dogs, since my partner died in March 2009. We had lived and worked together, mostly twenty four hours a day, for nearly 28 years and I have never lived alone before. It is a tribute to my wonderful friends that I am still here, still sane(ish) and ready to re-invent myself. I love them all more than words can ever say and can never thank them enough for all they have done and are still doing. It is also a tribute to Alexandra Kurland and 'The Click That Teaches' that I know how to save myself now. To new beginnings.......

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Fitting Everything In.

One of my liveries and friends brought her mother here with her the other day. I have very much wanted to meet her as hearing stories about her has inspired and intrigued me.

When she was about to turn sixty she decided that she wanted to backpack around the world for a year, by herself (her husband died some years before). She decided to learn how to shoot a gun, ride a motorbike and ride a horse, in case she needed to do any of those while travelling. She mastered the basics of those then set off and had a wonderful time. I thought that was so brave and inspiring.

When she was here she asked to see a quick clicker display and I was very keen to try and impress someone I admire so much. I took Bella into the field and did all the usual routine, including the bow, then decided to see if she would stand on the trough. When I tried this with her before she wasn't convinced that it was safe so I left it as I knew Jack would do it, and never got around to trying again.

Mother and daughter watched me encouraging Bella to give it a try, which only took a couple of minutes as I have done it so often with Jack now that I was convinced that it was safe and a reasonable request for her. When she stepped up onto it we got spontaneous applause and cheers. They seemed more impressed with watching her master that than with watching her do her well practised bow.

The mother said that she had never seen anything like that in real life before, only on the television. I was on cloud nine from that!!!!

I have been rushing around madly all week having sacked my solicitor and taken over the dispersal of David's estate myself. A few months ago I wouldn't have said boo to a goose and now I'm phoning partners in firms of solicitors and telling them that I no longer require their services!!!! I can't believe myself most of the time these days!!!!!

As a consequence my ponies have been left without attention yet again. Today Bella was seen in the field from some distance away, standing with her front feet on the trough. I think that she just may be trying to tell me something!!!!

My farrier came tonight to trim all their feet. I showed him Bella's bow and Spanish Walk.He used to be in King's Troop and spends a lot of time on film sets with a stunt team he shoes for. I told him that I want to teach Bella to lie down next and he told me how they do it with the stunt horses. I told him that I wanted to get her to volunteer to and not to make her do it and he said that it would take years as horses didn't like lying down on command. I told him I'd have her doing it before he comes again and asked him to make a bet with me about he. He wouldn't do it!!!!!!!

I think it's time I got on with it. Life is all about prioritising, isn't it, and training my ponies has been far too low down my list of priorities for far too long now. They deserve better and so do I. The house and farm are well under control and my business looks sustainable and comfortable. I have won the friendship and affection of everyone here. I can afford to slow down and relax a little now but I think that trying so hard and caring so much has become rather addictive because I get so much back from everyone all of the time.

Maybe earlier mornings are the answer because I really do want to be able to spend as much time as possible with everyone here, plus give my ponies my undivided attention whenever I'm training them. To that end I'm off for an earlier night than usual now, once I've been out and said goodnight to my ponies. Telling you about my next round of plans for new friend and business making schemes will have to wait a little longer!!!!!


  1. Good show. You will find out that people are usually more interesting in the horse learning to do something (I prefer than writing you making the horse do) than in a finished result like a bow or half-pass. Only people knowing how hard it is to teach a half-pass are impressed by it ^-^

    I am always so dumb found to realise that traditional horsemanship is so rought compassionless. I know how to lie down horses from Saul (cowboy traditional) and Parelli. With Parelli it does not take years, and the horse learns quite fast without scaring himself as it is done step-by step.

    I guess like Ak.

    Have fun, good for you for sacking your lawyer, they are leeches.

  2. Well done you, giving your solicitor the bums rush. they can be a rapacious ineffectual bunch, as I know to my cost!
    What a great step forward,you have come such a long way,bye the way 60 feels just the same as fifty,you just get a little more tired!
    Have just said goodbye to my lovely Aussie friend,we hav'nt stopped talking and laughing for three days.
    Friends are so precious, I am thrilled that you are surrounded by such a lovely gang.

    I am like you,I dont seem to be getting tho the daily list with time to spare, think its the shorter daylight hours. Hey ho,must go and shin up the ladder to finish painting my bargeboards before winter really sets in.
    David and I send all our love J
    PS Book and vids hav'nt shown up yet,did they get posted?

  3. You know, maybe some more time with your horses will actually give more energy to take care of the rest, even if it takes time?

  4. I will be eagerly waiting to find out if you win that bet with your farrier. *G* Somehow, I suspect you will.

  5. Thank you all very much!!!!!!

    I told someone the other day that I don't think anyone ever really grows up - some people are just better at pretending than others but I'm sure we are all still children at heart, trying our hardest to be grown ups!!!!