First Day of Training

As we arrived on Sunday morning, lwe met Esja and her owner coming up the track.  Esja used to belong to us and it was lovely to see her again and looking so well too.

There was a diligent group of spectators perched on the side of the arena, now possibly suffering from hypothermia.

Daisy went in with Kappi.


Kappi’s had lovely hair.

They both worked very hard.

Midway through the lesson, someone brought their sheep up to meet and greet the on-lookers, as you do.  It’s a Shetland thing.

BeAnne also did her best to entertain.

Straight after her lesson on Kappi, Daisy rode Taktur.  Luckily she is used to this kind of set-up at home so just tacked up and got on with it.

Taktur tried his best but the Lady-Girls kept distracting him.

Flossie was on Kappi duty while he cooled down and had a bit of grass to eat.

Taktur, I think, won the Best Hairdo of the Day Award but he is always very handsome.  It’s his job.

Icelandic horses were coming and going all the time.

The fog also came down but, as usual, we all just got on with whatever the weather threw at us.

After the day of lessons, there was a bit of a break, then a Chinese takeaway in the hall.  Elisabeth Jansen, our trainer, gave an interesting lecture on the bio-mechanics of the Icelandic horse.

It was a very long day, but a good one.

(BeAnne slept through the lecture – I brought her “travel” bed in for her.  I always keep it in the back of the car.)

The First Photos

We loaded up first thing Sunday morning, having fed everyone and done our chores.  Daisy had spent the prevoius day packing our van with everything but the kitchen sink for herself, Kappi and Taktur.

Lessons were already in progress when we arrived.

The weather was not helpful.  Foggy, cold, wet and windy but we are tough.

Because PolPot (today’s name for our ginormous cat/panther) was planning World Domination, we took BeAnne with us to duly enchant the spectators.

Upon our arrival, Daisy and Flossie led the horses to their new onsite accommodation.

Taktur happily moved into his stable and spent most of his day, when he was not in training, shouting to let every the Lady-Girls know he had arrived.

Kappi lifted his head briefly from his very own pile of silage when I said his name.  He probably thought I had brought more food – his main motivation.

Daisy’s first lesson was on Kappi.

BeAnne, and her followers, were watching avidly, taking it all in.

Photo by Jean Sinclair

Between horses, Baa-rry, the resident tame sheep showed off his show-jumping skills, which were very impressive.

Photo by Jean Sinclair

I am exhausted.  It has been a long two days but definitely worth it.  We learned so much.  More photos tomorrow when I have gone through my big camera’s memory cards.   I need to sleep for a week.

Training Days

Photo by Elisabeth Jansen of Hólar University College

We are attending a two day training session in Burra, another island in Shetland about 45 minutes away.  Our trainer is Elisabeth Jansen of Hólar University College, Sauðárkrókur, Iceland.

Daisy is having lessons on Taktur and Kappi on both days.  As well as riding, we are attending a lecture on Icelandic horse bio-mechanics after a Chinese takeaway!  I will write the blog properly tomorrow when I have looked at my photos.  This is a photo from yesterday afternoon when the weather was lovely.  Today has been not as nice.

More tomorrow, I promise with a possible overload of photos.  I left OH with Cattie and BeAnne is with us, having a bit of a break and enjoying the attention.  She is still not herself.



While I have a rest

My back is not good today.  I woke up tired (I hate that) so I decided the best thing to do would be to have a rest this afternoon.

While I slept, Flossie went out in my stead to take photos of everyone enjoying the Spring sunshine. – a new weather phenomenon.   We had all been for a ride earlier in the morning, which had been lovely.

Here is Mr Bibble and his spectacular silly-frilly.

Floss went over to Clothie – the derelict house you can see behind Bibble which is situate in a 5 acre field.

Taktur generously greeted his new field guest.

And then she was spied by the others.

And was duly mugged.

These two maybe small but they are consummate in the art of mugging.

But in the nicest possible way.

(Taktur is a kind and patient baby-sitter)

Floss sat on one of the many rumbling drystone walls in the field,

Even Kappi came up for a chat.

So while I slept trying to regroup and get my back under control, Floss enjoyed the sunshine with her small, if slightly unusual, little herd.

There could be worse jobs in life.


Thinking and Worried

I have been thinking and worrying a bit about Brá recently.

Since Dreki was weaned, Brá has continued to drop weight.  I have also noticed she was kicking her belly while she eats, which can be a sign of abdominal colic.  Her teats are fine, small and pointing downwards – I don’t think it is mastitis or a temperature.  No diarrhoea either.

Brá was wormed at the beginning of April – everyone was.

Yesterday, with my waters churning, I decided to nuke her with Fasinex for possible liver fluke, which is rare in horses but on the up these days especially this time of year.  I am hoping it did the trick.

This morning, for the first time ever, Brá came galloping when we arrived, for her bucket.  She only kicked once, but it was more, I think, from being hassled by a hopeful Lilja on the scrounge.

I am keeping a close eye on Brá now.  Having said that, she is not helpful so it could just be learned behaviour from being fed up with Dreki and she will start putting on weight now the Spring grass is arriving.

Meanwhile Lilja remains with Hetja – she will be moved soon and weaned.

I have a plan.

(Note how Lilja loves hanging onto Hetja’s leadrope.  Her dad, Taktur, does this too – a terrible habit but awwww!)

Once the Spring grass is more evident, I will open the gates and let The Minions into Hetja’s field.

Hetja will eventually stop trying to kill them all and Lilja will get new friends.

Then, when Lilja is not looking, we will move Hetja and Brá while Lilja stays with her new herd.  Well, that’s the theory, anyway.

Mr Headcollar is an old friend and Lilja is now leading, going fairly well too.

Big phew!

Meanwhile, back at home, peace talks are in progress.