In the Saddle: Do you want good or bad news?
We’ve had a great weekend last week with the horses. The ground in our new home is sandy soil, which is wonderful compared to the clay soil at our last home in Ferry.
It means it drains so much better and is less likely to suffer mud, as opposed to the clay soil we left behind. This is exciting because we can ride out on our land and still have lessons in winter, without the need for a menage (although I still want one in the future!). My daughter Alyssia and her pony ‘Mara’ have been starting up their lessons following the Christmas break with her instructor Ellen. Ellen has been teaching Alyssia for five years now and we originally met her through Grove House Stables in Misterton. She’s an excellent children’s instructor and is fully qualified. I also met my horse trainer through riding at Grove House, when on a break from horses. Natalie Roberts has been training me and my horse April for years now since she went freelance. Through Natalie I met my competition trainer Claire Cooper too who helped me get Sully (my then foal) to learn to load and lead up for the judge. I’ve been very lucky to have such a good team around me. This week’s lesson was bittersweet though. Alyssia and Mara both overcame leg injuries last year and were unable to rejoin pony club. They’ve been building back up to getting to know each other as we only had Mara a few months before injuries struck. I’ve never seen Alyssia and Mara be so confident together and for the first time this week they got their canter work beautiful. I was so proud of Alyssia who is only ten years old. Sadly, at the end of the best lesson yet - Ellen had some good and bad news. Great that she had a new job at a brilliant event yard, but bad in that it’s in the Cotswolds. After initially whooping at her new job (Ellen always fits lessons in at the weekend for us) I then realised what it meant. After crying and hugging poor Ellen, who ensured we would still hear from her but not quite as regular I can honestly say she is the best children’s instructor for little babies that I’ve met. Don’t worry Ellen, we won’t let you go just yet! See you every fortnight.