We've all heard the theories that playing Mozart to your unborn child gives you a good chance of having a future musical genius, so I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised when her first word was 'WORSE' and not the usual mummum or dada. As soon as she could stand she demanded her rights to ride and would sit on my horse in front of me while the groom led us down to the stables. At age three she had her first official riding lesson and by four did her first lead rein class in a proper show. And it was all downhill for her dad's cheque account from there!
Over the years she's had some very special ponies and horses - starting from a dinky little part shetland painted pony of 10 hands to the current favourite, another painted horses standing over 16 hands with a jump to match. Officially named Castle Rock, he rocks to the name of Elvis with a real rock star swagger. We also have a semi retired chestnut thoroughbred mare called Amanita who does stunning dressage but is a bit of a lunatic in the jumping arena and her last pony before she grew too tall, a super little Arab gelding that I bred myself and that is as much a part of the family as my children. His name is Al Lahab and there is still a special bond between the two of them. He was the one who taught her all the 'tricks' of riding (literally, he knew them all!) and made her into the tactful and thoughtful rider she is today.
As you can tell, I have a deep love for horses. It's very satisfying to see the girl child achieving in her riding what I was never talented enough to do myself. If I sound proud it's because I am!
Anyone for coffee?