Dear diary

As I write this I am pleased to announce I am now returned from hiding, no longer skulking about the hay barn like a mouse on steroids and sadly sporting a new stab mark in my neck. Yes you guessed it mother found me; frog marched me into the barn and made a seemingly nice woman inflict bodily harm upon my persons with two very large needles. TWO!

A few of you asked last week what is wrong with the backs of my knees; well to my mind the answer to that question is absolutely nothing. I have 4 legs and they all work perfectly fine. Mother however gets her pantaloons in a twist about the fact I can get a build up of “gunk” (her words not mine — I think it’s technical “vet speak”) in the feathers at the back of my knee and I can get sore in the crease of my knee.

As a result I am forced to undergo this hellish harpooning twice a year to help keep my legs nice and “clean” and mother is “forced” (her words again) to knock me out to thoroughly clean said creases. Admittedly it tickles when she tries to do it and thus if I am awake I may, possibly, perhaps, sort of, try to kick her head in

Anyway enough of my medical mishaps, I have NEWS! This weekend I am taking one step closer to world eventing domination and am taking part in a pair’s cross-country competition with that little yellow mare I talked about a few weeks ago. Now, I’m not being paranoid but I swear I talked about this last week to you diary and so I’m starting to get a sneaking suspicion Aunty Becky might be privy to my musings. Either that or she’s actually mystic mog which is a little scary…

I went out on a hack to meet up with the yellow mare yesterday and to discuss team tactics. Any reports of me throwing a wobbly at all the tractors in the area are once again a complete exaggeration and Aunty Becky’s report to mother she had to get off at one point because I “refused to move” are grossly unfair. I was merely allowing her a leg stretch mindful of the fact she’s been injured of late. Honest…

Anyway, we have sort of formulated a plan that involves me being amazing and taking the lead over all the scary jumps with the little mare following adoringly in my wake whilst I trail blaze our way to glory. I have ignored the mother-led sweepstake at the yard that has the ratio on us being eliminated by fence 3 at 50:50. She is a kill-joy and clearly no affectionardo of the finer points of cross-country expertise — I give us to at least fence 5…

Mind you I nearly didn’t have a mother after an ill-fated encounter with a ditch this morning. It was in no way my fault. We were having a nice hack out in the countryside with my main wingman Billy, generally mooching, mother riding one handed like John Wayne and chatting nonsense about men with Aunty C. We reached one of our canter stretches and away we went, Billy slightly in the lead, me swiftly catching him up with my bigger ground-eating canter as usual. Aunty C yelled to mum that we could go past so we went to takeover, shimmied past and switched to Billy’s inside running along the edge of a rather deep water-filled ditch.

As the end of the track was nearing mother says she was forewarning me to start to think about slowing down, all I heard was “whoa”, so thought “emergency brakes QUICK!” — slammed my anchors on, skidded about a foot and nearly put mum over the front of my head and into said  ditch. The fact that Billy then swept past clearly smirking and I realised it was still ON, picked my head up from between my knees and took off again with mother hanging onto my ears like a large human piercing, was just all an unfortunate misunderstanding. Luckily mother was by this stage crying with laughter and clinging on like a limpet on a promise. It was not a good look if I’m honest but at least she thought it was funny…

The only thing that made me snigger more was a cat throwing down some ninja moves at Billy as we went past a farm on the way home. It’s hard to look superior when you’re a 700kg black and white beef cake yielding to a feline with an attitude problem, that’s hissing at you like a hosepipe on full blast. If I’m totally honest I may have smirked just a little.

So wish me luck for Sunday, pray our “team” cross-country colours aren’t pink and I’ll fill you in next week.

Laters

Hovis