Last year, for the first time ever, we joined the British Connemara Society, only for Cashel Bay JJ (my pride and joy) to then be called, apparently by the society, for remeasurement.
Cash had spent three months since the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) without shoes, having his feet trimmed very little and often, so we decided not to spoil this by trimming them back more than we usually would for the remeasurement. I would have died of shame if he’d measured out, and our fear was that in a vet’s yard, with two vets and a steward present, his quirkiness could make him very nervous and stand on his tiptoes. However, the vets concerned went to great trouble to be extremely quiet and calm, and thankfully he measured in safely. I will be treasuring his gold certificate and can’t wait to be on him again very soon.
As many of you know, my mother is obsessed with Botanica, which admittedly, is the most amazing range of skin products suitable for anyone and anything. When she’s not marinating herself or our ponies in it, she is selling it from our kitchen. Due to Botanica being based in Ireland, she proudly refers to herself as an “international businesswoman”, particularly to my father, who responds with a lot of eye rolling.
Last weekend she took great bags to the competition where she distributed them to some of her clients. Although she was very excited about this, I have heard a different story from my sister Susie, who as the businesswoman’s assistant, told me it’s the job from hell, and feels like Andrea from the Devil Wears Prada under the wrath of a more disorganised version of Miranda Priestley. Apparently she was made to lug a bag full of Botanica products, weighing the same as a car, from where the horsebox was parked to where all mummy’s clients had parked, stopping now and then when mummy needed to catch her breath.
“When did you ever see Chrissie Wheeler’s (our mother’s great heroine) children struggling under great bags of White Company in horsebox car parks?” Susie asked, with which I agreed, we never had.
“It’s practically child labour”. What’s worse, having handed over the goods, yet more sales were made, meaning Susie would have to go back to the lorry each time to collect additional products until she felt like one of those mules you see in begging adverts, and could stand no longer.
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Speaking of my mother’s antics, she has now developed an unfortunate case of what she likes to call “lorry leg”, or more specifically, “Angela’s knee” (named after our horsebox, Angela). She used to love driving in “Angie”, who she has always maintained almost drives herself — she’s so light and easy. Suddenly however, now that there are the well-documented 1500 miles a week in her car (or her “temple”, as she says) to watch my brother Algy’s sport matches, mummy has decided that Angela rocks her straight off to sleep. She has explained this to daddy, and has now, following the progression of her rare “disease”, which has rather vague symptoms, hinted at a show day driver in the interest of safety and, predictably, has concluded that this would be an excellent treatment. Unfortunately, this was received by some of my father’s most withering looks. It’s ok, though, I’m sure Botanica will cure lorry leg very effectively.