Hovis’ Friday Diary: blowing away the cross-country cobwebs before Burghley

  • Dear diary,

    Life, one has to say, is not bad at the moment, not bad at all.

    The sun is shining, the grass has gone green again and, although I miss my wingman Hot Stepper dreadfully, there is a new boy at the yard who seems alright.  He’s come to be my sharer Aunt T’s mum’s loan horse (did you follow that?) as she wants something less famous than me.  Well I actually think she said smaller, but I’m sure she meant less famous…

    Anyway, apparently we might go out hacking together and apparently he fancies himself as a bit of a nippy number.  All I can say is watch this space thoroughbred boy; you’ve not seen anything until you’ve seen a Destroyer stubble racing.  Ex-racer?  Kiss my feathered rump, I eat ex-racers for breakfast — well not literally (I’m actually vegetarian, but don’t tell anyone as it sounds a tad unmanly).  I look forward to giving him a re-education in the physics of forward momentum and the fury of feather power!

    Talking of feather power, I got to use mine again this week.  Stage 2 of secretly getting me ready for that Burghley party kicked off this week when T and I went cross-country schooling (well mum called it playing, but I think that detracts from the serious nature of my preparation).

    Anyway, it was FUN!  I went in a lorry with a very serious eventer dude who has been to Burghley, but he was foreign and didn’t seem to understand when I asked for tips.  Maybe it’s my accent?  There was also a rather foxy filly, but she was very young and a touch overwhelmed.  The other riders seemed to think this was due to her never having been out before, but personally I think she was just star struck.  I did try to tell her I’m just a normal gelding, but you know how some young girls are — in awe she was, I could tell…

    Mum made Aunt T take me over lots of different types of fences and on the whole it went well.  Admittedly stepping off a drop and forgetting to bring my rear legs with me was a little undignified, but I’m sure no-one noticed.   I admit I am a little rusty so it’s good to practise over smaller things, especially when we had a few steerage issues and I thought the quicker route out of sunken ditch was around the jump and not over it.  Oooopps.

    However, I do wish to point out that despite mother saying on my facebook page that I threw a hissy fit about jumping into water, I didn’t.  I was merely concerned that a) the ensuing tidal wave might have caused localised flooding; b) there wouldn’t be any water left for the others if I displaced it all; and c) Aunt T had already had a shower that morning and I was pretty sure didn’t want to get covered in smelly pond water.  Still she was very insistent, so I did it to please her.  Quite why she squealed when I later shook myself to rid my feathers of droplets of water I don’t know.  I assume excitement?

    I should also add that Cool New Shoes Man making snide comments on facebook about thinking they’d started fracking in the area was not appreciated. I have no idea what fracking is, but if he was implying I’d passed wind I can assure you it wasn’t me.  That 4-star eventer type looked very shifty so I blame him.  I do admit to smelling like a soggy old sock, but that is what happens when you jump into a duck’s toilet.  Yuck.

    So apparently I might be out jumping this weekend with Aunt T, which will be good, and sets me up nicely for Mr Fox-in-a-hole in a few weeks time.  Everyone is telling me it’s not going to happen, but I can feel it in my water; unless that’s something lurking from the lake incident, in which case please excuse me whilst I go and run around hysterically wafting my Hovis hose about it an attempt to rid myself of whatever has taken root.

    Yours now rather worriedly,


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