Sunday, 8 December 2013

Horse: lesson 1


Don't have time for the full post? Read the

Short Post

A week in which I met a Derbyist (see my earlier post and particularly her blog), said happy birthday to a friend and went to my first Riding Club London social.  Lindsey ran off to Berlin and I ran off to Hampshire to ride.

How was your week?!

Dante

The Full Post

The Riding Club, London



Living in London and not having a horsey background, I knew when I signed up to the  Derby that getting the hours in the saddle I needed to ride the race would be difficult.  When I stumbled across the Riding Club London on a Horse and Hound forum I was definitely interested - the idea seems to be that the club organises access to horses for its London-based members.  The forum post said that members were posh, but nice and the club had access to really great horses. 

I sent the club an email and Katharine, the director, invited me along to drinks at the Fox Club, Mayfair to meet the club.  It sounds really promising: they have an incredible network of horse contacts and organise lessons, hunting, polo - you name it, they sort it.  I left cheerful and definitely tipsy so a thumbs up from me.  I'm looking forward to my first event!

The Fox Club

A weekend in Hampshire

My friend Katy invited me up to her parents' place to ride a friend's horse and start learning to find my way around a stable.  We hacked out Saturday morning across Surrey countryside and then took two horses back to her parents' place for their, and my, edification.  This is what I learnt.

"Fun" is used in Hampshire to refer to activities most of the world would more commonly describe as "dangerous".  Like backing four year olds (note the safety gear).

Chip
Chip and Katy

And "fresh" or "bright" does not mean clean, or rude, or cheerful - in Hampshire this means TREAT WITH CAUTION.


Sadhira

It's difficult to see from this photo of a beautiful little mare that she is really something else - quick, neat and didn't think twice about throwing an almighty buck a good half an hour in and out of thin air.

She is lovely, though...

Sadhira and adoring fan

Anyway, horses ridden Katy went to the party later prepared to charm.

Minx

And charm she did.  She didn't seem to notice that her dress had ridden up dangerously high, but the perfect man we'd gone to meet might have.  He sent her a Facebook message before we managed to get home and then another and a text and tried to ring before she had a chance to reply!  Not sure where he got her number from...


As the sun set, we headed back to London tired but happy.  What a great weekend!