Hovis’ Friday diary: ‘a disaster of a week’

  • Dear Diary

    Well what a disaster of a week I had last week!

    As I told you all in my diary last week, I strongly suspected that Aunty Becky was going to take me to ponce about in circles but I had also overheard tales of jumping at the same venue at the same time.  This was confirmed when Aunty Becky saddled me up midweek and made me hack out on MY OWN.  Now normally I would have been all up for expressing my opinion of Aunty Becky’s insane ideas about flying solo sans wingman but I did swiftly realise two things — 1) we were heading to the yard where the foxy older yellow mare lives and 2) Aunty Becky seemed a tad nervous.

    Now I have known Aunty Becky long enough to know only one thought makes her nervous (other than having to tell mother she’s cut my feathers) and that’s showjumping. I thus perked up, sucked it up like a man and jauntily pranced down the road (sideways past the skip I admit but heh a boy can’t be too careful).

    Sure enough we picked up the foxy older yellow mare and continued on our merry way to the competition venue. Here I proceeded to show Aunty Becky that without a doubt I have showjumping genes buried in my bog-trotting ancestry and that feathers really do aid aerodynamics. By the end it’s fair to say I’m not sure who was more covered in sweat — me or Aunty Becky…

    On the way home a black car slid to a halt beside us and with a delighted whicker I shot forward across the road nearly depositing Aunty Becky onto the asphalt — I recognised mum’s car even if my human pilot didn’t. Mum had just returned from London and was keen to hear how we’d got on — apparently Aunty Becky’s comment of “he’s been very, very forward” wasn’t actually the compliment I thought it was?

    Mum sighed in that way she does when she’s trying to explain to people just how “special” I am (apparently “special” — complete with quote marks — is not a compliment either. Who knew?). She then muttered something about pulling like an inter city express. I think she was obviously referring to her travel arrangements for this week?

    So the day of the competition arrived and Aunty Becky arrived at the yard looking very smart, despite it pouring down in a manner that said we were going to require a boat to actually get to the venue.

    I strenuously deny any accusation that I snorted the entire way to the venue and generally leapt about like a cat on an electric fence. I was merely trying to dodge the raindrops. Honest.

    On arrival at the venue, I was allowed back to the stables as befitting a superstar of my status.  Or because Aunty Becky was also going to help do some dressage writing — take your pick as to what you believe…

    I ate some hay, eyed up a very attractive bay mare that was so tall even I would need to stand on a box but who clearly had exceptional taste, because she was looking at me like I was a particularly tasty carrot. Aunty Becky then came back, took me to the warm up and tried to hide from various members of my fan club who were excitedly pointing in our direction. I excitedly viewed the showjump in the corner and, mindful of our audience, dropped into a perfect outline to prance about in walk. All was good until Aunty Becky asked me for a trot. To say it was wonky would be unfair but it certainly wasn’t pretty.

    Despite my desire to continue, a very worried Aunty Becky pulled me up and leapt off. This then triggered the world and his dog looking at my legs, feet, bum, neck and all other body parts to try to understand why I was wonky. A very deflected and rather worried Aunty Becky took me back to the stable and called mum who turned up looking flustered and completely inappropriately dressed about 30-minutes later.

    Watching her leap about trying to avoid the puddles was rather amusing until she made me run up and down while she studied my legs with the practised air of someone used to pretending she knows what she’s doing. What can I say — she’s a management consultant, she gets lots of practise. After much musing it was decided I was slightly lame on my off-fore but while I wouldn’t compete Aunty Becky was going to have to slowly walk me home. In the meantime, I was to stay in the dry eating the venues hay while Aunty Becky marked other people’s prancing and I made goo-goo eyes at the tall brown mare. Bonus!

    You can thus imagine mother’s annoyance when she phoned Aunty Becky several hours later to see if she managed to “limp” me home only to have snitch bags tell her that I’d pulled her arms out and trotted most of the way home despite Aunty Becky trying to stop me. The fact mother herself was in A&E with an arm so burnt it looked like a medium-well steak probably added to her feeling of frustration, but I did hear a lot of questioning of my ancestry and more than one suggestion that mum and dad weren’t married…

    So our prancing plans are on hold until later in the month and I have promised to try to behave myself so that I get to do the good bit (i.e. the showjumping) as well. What can I say — that’s horses for you…



    P.S. Someone said last week that I should write a book. Where have you guys BEEN? I already have two books out and number three is on the way. All are sold with all the profits going to charity which annoys me immensely despite mother saying it’s a good thing to do.  Go to www.bransbyhorses.co.uk to order them!

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