Saturday, 2 February 2013

An ordinary Saturday

So sorry about the lack of blog yesterday. Technical problems.

Today, the sun came out and the snow returned. A thin, cold, sparking white covered everything again.

It was a usual day. Did horses; walked dog; went to breakfast; discussed equality; went to shop. Went home, did work, read Racing Post, placed bets. Cooked food, ate food. (Beef, for strength.)

Won money. Shouted at the television. (Go on, my son.) Calmed dog, who is still slightly disconcerted by Saturday racing noise. Tweeted incontinently. Always do this on big racing days; oddly, it helps with the nerves.

Practically had seizure as Captain Conan, my huge, sure-fire bet of the day, only just managed to win by a neck. The gallant Captain had five lengths to make up after the last, and did it, step by dogged, gallant step. He’s always done it on class before; now he had to call on guts.

Felt exhausted but happy. Backed three seconds in a row. Lost money. Still well up on the day. Mr William Hill a bit green about the gills.

Walked dog in the chill afternoon air. Went back to horses.

Stood, in the gloaming, for about twenty minutes, just communing with my mare. I do that sometimes.

There’s all manner of work that we do, but sometimes, I like to stand. When she first arrived, she was nervy and uncertain. Everything was too strange for her. She did not want much human contact. I let her find her way. I don’t like crowding or smothering horses. Now, she will stand, at liberty in five acres of field, and choose to be by my side. It’s my finest compliment.

I put my cheek against hers and breath slowly. I murmur a bit of nonsense to her. I scratch her sweet spot. We gaze out at the trees and the sky. My heart turns over.

And that was my very ordinary, very good day.


Today’s pictures:

2 Feb 1-001

2 Feb 1-002

2 Feb 2

2 Feb 3

2 Feb 4

2 Feb 5

2 Feb 6

Herd, in the morning sun:

2 Feb 10

2 Feb 13

My glorious, dozy girl:

2 Feb 14

Stanley the Dog went for his first walk with the lovely Stepfather. He was really very good:

2 Feb 15

Serious sit and stay face:

2 Feb 17


2 Feb 20


  1. Your lovely Stepfather is a very handsome gentleman. Your lucky mother!

    Stanley's ears continue to delight. Did STV show The Secret Life of Dogs this week? It was on ITV mid-week, Wednesday, I think, at 9.00pm, if you can find it on-line. Captivating stuff. One little gem was that dogs lick our faces because they think we are their mother - puppies do it to stimulate their doggie-mum to regurgitate food for them when they are being weaned. (I seem to remember seeing somewhere that this is also the origin of human kissing; in some cultures babies are still fed mouth-to-mouth with ready-masticated food).

    Fascinating, eh?

  2. Lovely photo of Stanley and your stepfather.


    1. I think so too. Just lovely.

  3. I just welled up reading the bit about how Red chooses to be by your side for all her 'wildness' and innate love of freedom.. how marvellous it is to be able commune like that with such a noble creature. I grow ever fonder of Stanley too.. he has such an earnest, honest look.

  4. Driven two hours to Koln to see day before last of David Hockney's "The Big Picture" exhibition of massive, multi-paneled oil paintings of Yorkshire forests and other landscapes. Now MUST see Yorkshire in all its glory.
    Would LOVE to see what Hockney would do to your beech boulevard!

  5. Serious sit and stay ear. ps Pat, agree that Hockney exhibition is amazing. If you ever get to Yorkshire, we are big on trees, hills, greenery and Salts Mill is worth a visit. Hockney exhibits at Salts Mill and it is a very fitting place, big old industrial mill, now converted to show his work. The whole place smells of lilies.

  6. The Stepfather arrives! What a handsome man! I can tell he and Stanley enjoy a pint and a crack when the womenfolk are away, just between the menfolk. They are both lovely to behold.

  7. Stanley's sit and stay face has stopped me in my tracks. I am absolutely smitten.


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