Right. It’s been quite a long and not very satisfying day. It’s cold and my poor old body is creaking as the first suspicion of winter comes in and there is mud everywhere and I did not write enough damn words. I am cross with myself for putting off until tomorrow what I should be doing today.
Very grumpy, I stumped down to the paddock to give the girls their tea. Then, I remembered that I had seen a clip on the internet last night where a woman danced with her horse. Apparently, horses love music. It’s a sound wave thing or something. Admittedly, it was slightly idiosyncratic, but bugger it, I grew up in the House of Idiosyncrasy. I was about nine before I discovered that not all fathers drank a steady stream of whisky macs whilst doing their day job. (Although, to be fair, I don’t know how you survive a wet afternoon at Huntingdon without a whisky mac.)
Sod ‘em if they can’t take a joke, I thought. I’ll see if the red mare wants to dance. I parked the car in the set-aside, opened all the doors, put Willie Nelson on at full blast, singing Mommas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys, and invited my glorious girl for a turn around the floor.
Turns out she does not like Willie Nelson.
I got the full de haut en bas Lady Bracknell look, more duchessy than the Duchess of Devonshire at a duchesses’ convention in Duchessville.
It made me shout with laughter. I actually doubled over, in the cartoon hilarity manner. I gasped and slapped my sides. She watched me kindly. The old girl’s had a long day, she was clearly thinking.
She looked faintly mollified when What Now My Love came on, and we stepped about a bit and did a turn or two.
Then I worked her normally for fifteen minutes, rugged her, hugged her, and let her follow me up to the top gate for tea, as Willie’s lovely, cracked, mournful voice followed us through the cold Scottish air.
This horse can do anything. She makes my heart lift in my chest like a balloon filled with helium. But she don’t dance.
That was pretty much the look I got. ONLY MORE DUCHESSY.