Horse shopping should be fun… but it can also considerably raise your blood pressure. Here's why...
1. Some things in life are certain. One is that, no matter how much you have to spend, the horse you fall in love with will be outside your budget.
2. You spend two long, boring hours stuck in traffic on the motorway as you head off to see a dealer in the back of beyond, only to take one look at the horse when you arrive and instantly know it’s not for you.
3. You arrive at the seller’s yard to discover it’s a riding school filled with excited kids and their parents. All of whom hang around the school to watch you as you try out the horse. No pressure, then!
4. You’ve discovered time and time again that people are either somewhat creative with the truth when describing the horse they’re selling, or deluded as to its ability. And age. And temperament. And colour… Let’s be kind and say that they’re probably blinded by love.
5. If you come from a non-horsey family, your mum will be stressing about why you’re getting another horse, and how you’re going to fit it around work and/or family, and what about all that motorway driving you’re doing while you’re looking — it’s so dangerous…
6. Your friends are really excited about your search and keep sending you Facebook ads for wildly unsuitable horses. Still, it’s nice that they care.
7. You’re somewhere in the Derbyshire Dales, driving along a B road with no clue where you’re actually going, and running late to see a horse. It’s at this point that your satnav goes out of range – and a tractor pulls in front of you and stays there, proceeding at 10 miles an hour, for the next half-hour.
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8. You find the perfect horse and it’s love at first sight. This is The One. You indulge in happy daydreams of the pair of you galloping cross-country, the wind in your hair and mane respectively. The song ‘Just The Two Of Us’ keeps playing in your head. You know the vetting is really just a technicality, as the horse was clearly sound as a pound. So you’re utterly heartbroken when it fails. You vow you’ll never fall in love again, that you won’t let your heart rule your head. And you won’t… Until the next time.
9. Although you’re looking forward to getting a new horse and it taking you forward, you’re quailing a bit at having to go through the whole ‘getting to know you’ stuff once you get it back to your yard.
10. You’re considering giving it all up and taking up golf instead.