Ever noticed the look of disbelief on non-horsey people’s faces when you reveal a car boot jam-packed with riding gear, or how your colleagues wince when you talk about riding at 7am on a Sunday? Here are 16 reasons why those who lead an equine-free life think horsey folk are nuts.
1. They look forward to a Sunday lie in, but you’re on the yard by 8am as normal.
2. Driving a huge lorry doesn’t faze you, and neither does reversing a trailer down a narrow, twisty lane.
3. They think the rain and cold means an indoor day, but you’d still rather be outside doing something horsey.
4. You rave about riding and being out in the fresh air for staving off a hangover, but they’d rather be in bed. The same applies for a cold.
5. They no longer ask what you did on a Saturday night because they know you were most likely in bed early ahead of the next day’s competition.
6. Agreeing on the right temperature is difficult. So while you’re in the office wearing a t-shirt, everyone around you refuses to take off their coats and scarves until the heating is turned up.
7. They list shopping and socialising as a hobby on their CV, and can’t understand why this makes you laugh.
8. Grooming your horse is one of your favourite ways to unwind. They’d rather go for a massage.
9. While other drivers or walkers give droppings on the road a wide berth, you go straight over without a second thought. “It’s just grass,” you argue — but they’re not convinced.
10. They can’t wait for summer to arrive, but you’re secretly dreading the horse flies/sweet itch/sunburnt muzzles.
11. They gush about the designer shoes they recently bought; you’re more interested in the smart close-contact saddle you’ve had your eye on for months.
12. While non-horsey people save for a mortgage, you don’t have much to spare after paying your horse’s livery bill.
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13. You arrive at work on Monday morning with tales of a great weekend competing.
“Did you win?” asks an unhorsey colleague.
“No, but my horse gained a lot of experience,” is your reply. They don’t get it.
14. The best conversations you have are with your horse. Again, they don’t get it.
15. They regularly comment on how tanned your face and arms are, and wonder why you never show off your legs. (All those hours in breeches mean they are too white.)
16. You rave about the likes of Carl Hester, Scott Brash and Michael Jung, but they have no idea who they are.