We came home first. The house felt welcoming, the grass incredibly lush and the weeds even more so. Alice was next, miaowing indignantly at us, and tucking into her feed as if she had eaten nothing for the last three weeks. Last night, Ben and Rosie: I drove the trailer to Sandra’s. All four horses were in a field together and Ben and Cassie headed to the gate, possibly expecting a bucket of feed. Ben came up to me, sniffed my arm and then paid attention to Cassie crowding in behind him: ears back, step by slow step backwards to send her further away. Minnie and Rosie stayed back.
We caught Ben and Cassie, Ben was very happy to be caught, dealt with mud and tacked them up for a ride. I have a new saddle, which I will post about tomorrow. We did a circuit with good hills in the gathering dusk. The evenings are shorter now. We have come home to strong winds, a chill in the air and the virginia creeper turning red. Ben looks darker, his winter coat starting to come. He looks terrific, coat shining despite the mud, fitter on the hills than I expected despite a rather large belly, even for Ben.
It has been great to read Sandra’s blog, allowing a glimpse of Ben and Rosie’s holiday. Sandra said that Cassie and Minnie love to canter and gallop round the field and so Ben did too, anxious to keep up with them as indeed he was yesterday evening, making sure to keep pace with Cassie whilst trotting up the hills, despite her long legs and lovely long stride.
Then Rosie; coming to catch her in the growing dark, I had a moment of memory of how hard she was to catch when she first came to us. We could just make her out. In the dark, she moved to where her bucket of feed would usually be. When there was no bucket she moved away. “Rosie”. She stopped, turned, I moved towards her, she moved towards me. She is the most beautiful, wise, self-contained presence and I felt honoured that she wanted to come.
Loading was no problem, except that Ben thought he should get into Rosie’s half of the trailer with her. I must admit, I felt a pang taking them from their new herd of Cassie and Minnie. Home, they trotted a circuit of the track before settling down to graze the grass that has grown at the edges. That is all they will be getting for now. We all need a diet after our holidays.
Grass on our track:
Grass in the paddock:
Home again this morning, Ben: