Activity Centre

While my OH was walking Loki around Leradale, I stayed with the Minions to brush them and sit on a rock for a chat.

Instantly, my coat was destined to be eaten.

And Dreki was watching, taking it all in.  What have I done?

I had already rescued my camera from Waffle who took it for a little ride….  And then Tiddles found my precious thermal leather gloves.

I shouted at him to put them down but Tiddles was having none of it.  Yes, I ended up chasing him in circles around the field until I finally got my glove back. He was not sorry.  Not nearly sorry enough.

Silver pretended to be a good boy.

Fivla was beautiful.  Today, I was trying to brush manes and forelocks.

The conditioning spray was carefully hung on the fence.

But only for a short time.

The conditioning spray had no hope. Everyone wanted it.

The brush was doomed too.

Various dfferent ponies made a point of eating my coat.

All my things!

Then, of course, there was the headcollar, which I didn’t use but brought along just in case.

And still Dreki watched. Taking it all in.

Somebody wanted something.

And Dreki was always available to help.

On a good note, I also managed to introduce Dreki to being brushed.  I did his tail.

And a vague attempt at his mane.  He is very sticky from the lick bucket which is his personal friend but he stood still and enjoyed being brushed.

What is that adage?  Never work with animals or children.  I am exhausted from rescuing my personal property from the Minions.  I ended up sitting on a rock just laughing at them.  Best therapy ever.

Cold, very Cold

It’s blimmin’ freezing here with a fierce south-east wind.  There was even ice on the water troughs and buckets this morning.

But on the plus-side, the mud is drying up, which cheers me slightly.

I went for a wander with my camera.

I will admit to not feeling terribly inspired about anything at the moment.  It is just too cold.

The Boyzens are clever and know where to look for the best shelter – the back of the indoor school.  It is almost balmy there.

They were all sitting comfortably chewing their cud.  ‘Ster, as ever, enjoying his fashionable food look.

Lambie is not as fat as the others despite special efforts to feed him up.

‘Bert is another fat woolly boy.  Some might say obese.

Puzzah is his usual self.  He has his loving moments and is really trying to behave.  He knows his name and comes when he is called.

I went into Albie and Newt’s field for a little chat.

They are so very loving and appreciate my visits.  Always lots of hugs, especially for Albie.

I am glad they have each other and it is a good idea they are in this field.  I know they miss the others but there is far less mud and they can mooch about for miles if they want.

Could someone bring Spring back please.  We need it.

I love this photo.  It shows how bleak I am feeling.  Abba meets the Eastern Bloc!

When We Woz Posh

I have been searching my photo archives for pictures of the 1906 Spindle Back Gig in action back in the day when we trained and sold Shetland ponies to be driven.

The gig’s first show outing was to The Black Isle Show with my most favourite Shetland pony, Jackson.

He was perfect.  A mini-Friesian just Shetland pony size.

Then off to the Royal Highland Show in 2006.

The gig was also used for a tandem team – Charlie as the leader (front) and Andy, the wheeler (back) in the Multiples Open Private Driving Class at the Royal Highland Show in 2008.

A few days before, these two ponies had been going as a pair but had started racing each other in a very scary way so the day before the show, we made the executive decision to amend our show entry as a tandem rather than a pair. The Gods smiled and they went much better qualifying for the Championship held in the Grand Arena well as The Osborne Refrigerators BDS National Championships.

Charlie also took part in the Best Driven Shetland Class coming second.

Afterwards, we had some dodgy folk following behind the cart with a wedge of money desperate for us to name our price so they could buy Charlie.  They had to be escorted off the Royal Highland Show premises by Security when they started throwing bollards at us because we kept refusing their “offer”.

It was quite scary and we ran away in our lorry hoping we were not being followed!

So that’s the fun we had with this beautiful gig.  It is nice to remember.

I Still Walk

I may have fallen slightly by the wayside, so to speak, on this walking a billion miles a year or whatever it was I mentally signed up for earlier in the year.

But when the weather was slightly less frantic and now I am feeling much better, BeAnne and I went for our usual 3 mile walk along the road and back again.

For the first time, I saw a nearly-white mountain hare in a field by the side of the road. I have never seen hares there so it was lovely to just stop, wait and watch.

I think mountain hares are very special.  So pretty too.

There were the usual hill sheep in their wide variety of colours.

They are always very inquisitive and on the odd occasion Lambie comes too he could be a different species.  He likes the idea of hill sheep but he doesn’t really get it, and sticks out like a sore thumb, coming home complaining they don’t like classical music and biscuits!

On my way home, the horses had finally left their food to see what they could find in the field which runs along the side of the track.  Efstur was having fun aggravating dear old patient Iacs.

Efstur was not going to give up.

He wanted a reaction, so Iacs told him.

And then it developed into a little game of I bite you, no I bite you!

And that is why Efstur is so nice.

Because he has the best teachers all around him.

Maybe not the brightest, but certainly the nicest.

It was nice to get out and about on my pins.

Feeling Rather Chuffed

Every day, I try to do a little bit of training with Lilja and Dreki, my Icelandic horse yearlings.

Dreki is an easy-going boy who has matured in his head so much these past few winter months.  He is always easily caught (mostly because he is in my face wanting nose kisseys) and wears a headcollar happily.

We have even started leading though he is not very good at it but, still, it is a start.

Lilja on the other hoof, ever since we moved her to this field with her mother, has always been difficult.  She took huge umbrage at the time and has refused to get over herself enjoying her “issues”.  She is a diva and I have had to back off on any thought of training or getting her used to Mr Headcollar as I couldn’t get very near her.

But this past week, we have had a breakthrough – Lilja has been more open to discussion and, with careful body language, I can now put a headcollar on her in the field.

I have managed this on three consecutive days and yes, the headcollar is huge as it is used for her mother, but the general being-able-to-wear-it is an achievement.

Once on, I tell Lilja that no one, to my knowledge, has actually died from having to wear a headcollar.  This is Big Girl stuff.

Lilja is not certain that she believes me, but this is progress from the hysterical little Miss who was convinced she had a note from her Mum saying she was exempt from anything she wanted not to do, which was basically everything!

There is lots of being told what a clever girl she is.

I am pleased we have finally moved forwards.  I was beginning to worry!