Posted by Tania Kindersley.
A really hard work day. At five o’clock, my brain goes pop, as if a gasket or a fuse has blown. Normally I would go on until seven or eight, but that seems to be it for the day. I had all this tremendous horse stuff to tell you and now I hardly know what my name is. (I am certain you are quite devastated; I know that all you need on a rainy Monday is another twenty-seven paragraph horse story.)
Although I will tell you that she put up her sternest challenge today. Oh, she brought out her box of tricks. And there were people watching. ‘Don’t embarrass me in front of the watching people,’ I said in her ear. Ha, ha, ha, ha, went Red the Mare.
The really strange thing was I absolutely loved it. I have not had to concentrate so hard since the old queen died. And, again, we got there in the end. Today, achieving any kind of gentle forward motion involved a lot of circling. I had forgotten how much the circle is your friend. You can use it for everything – for getting her attention back, when she is being silly and not concentrating; for slowing her down, when she is going too fast; for getting her moving, if she plants her feet. A half ton horse will absolutely not move forward if it decides not to, however much you kick on. But it cannot resist a tight turn.
Besides the circling, my friend today was laughter. For some reason, I found it incredibly funny that she was putting me through it a bit. The really strange thing is that I take it as a compliment. I can damn well rise to the challenge, and I wonder if the mare knows that, somewhere in her old horsey mind. One of the things I love most in the Pigeon is that she makes me laugh. Now it turns out I also have a funny horse. I adore her. She is an absolute hoot.
And in other headline news: today is The Sister’s birthday. So it is happy birthday to the dearest, most beloved sibling, and to old Will Shakespeare too, with whom she shares the day. And now I must go and sit quietly whilst my brain shuts itself down.
Too shattered even for pictures. Here are a couple of my naughty, funny girls:
See that dopey, dozy, butter wouldn't melt in my mouth, blinky face? Don't be fooled for a moment.