From :

Wagon. A cranky contary female / an ugly female. She\'s some wagon eh?

wagon. wagon - an awful woman. than one is such a wagon!

wagon. a woman thats a bitch. dat ones a right wagon.

Wagon. A cantankerous old woman.. Yer wan's some wagon, I asked her could I feed the seagulls and she lifted me out of it!

wagon. car or other mode of transport. i'll drive my waggon.

Wanderly Wagon. A much loved Irish children's TV program which ran from 1968 to 1982

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Pass the Valium Please...

It was all coming together nicely last Tuesday.

The Renegade boots were tracked as far as Sacramento, and looked like they would arrive at Martine’s sister’s house in California on Wednesday, just in time to be packed and brought to Ireland.

Anja was due to come to us on Wednesday to give GiGi and Flurry their second trim, just before they travelled.

Finally, and most importantly,  Grainne from George Mullins contacted us to say the horses would be leaving on either Thursday or Friday, arriving in France on Saturday or Sunday.

All we had to do was let Fani, at La Florentine, know that the horses would arrive this weekend, and confirm that Nathalie, the French horse transporter, would be able to collect the horses in Macon on either Saturday or Sunday.  Simple, eh? - texts and emails whizzed off through the ether, now we just had to wait for the replies.

Anja duly arrived, having crossed the Cork/Kerry mountains in snow and ice - what a trooper!  The trimming went well, she was very pleased with Flurry in particular, although he was a complete ass to trim - fidgety and constantly parking himself in the corner.  She advised Martine to trim the hair at his heels in order to allow his feet to dry a bit better, which should help with the sponginess we've seen at the back of his feet.

After looking at GiGi walk, and consulting with Anne, she eventually decided to wrap GiGi's front feet, using the Performance Horse Wear bandages, to help support her feet a bit better as she adjusts to barefoot life.  She also advised using the Cleantrax disinfecting kit to help with the cracks in front and the ragged, thrushy frogs behind. She gave us lots of other helpful, general advise, and then we said goodbye, see you in May! It feels so weird to be finally saying that to people!

Then things slowly started to unravel... first of all there was the message from California “Boots arrived, two pairs, one red, one yellow”.

What???? We ordered FOUR pairs of boots!  Martine emailed and texted her sister to confirm that she did indeed mean two PAIRS and not two SETS, but unfortunately her sister was incommunicado for the day.  We sat down and rationalised this one and agreed not to panic – if there were only two pairs of boots, it just meant that we’d have a bit of to-and-fro with the manufacturers, the other two pairs would be sent to France and it would eventually be sorted out.  Ok, we were both calm again.

Except there was no word from Fani or Nathalie.... but finally an email arrived from Fani on Wednesday, all is well and she's ready for our guys to arrive.

But Anne was slowly going into meltdown, despite several phone calls, voice mail every time, and emails, the French transporter remained incommunicado for the best part of 48 hours.  Martine was putting a brave face on it, but Anne, after a very sleepless night, with flash like dreams of two horses wandering free in a French motorway service area slowly chomping the grass, or being picked up by a random horse slaughterer, finally cracked on Thursday morning.  After several fruitless phone calls to alternative transporters, she finally picked up the phone :

Anne: " Martine I cannot send Gigi off to France with no firm arrangement the other end" 
Martine : "Mullins will kill us if we cancel" 
Anne: "I don't care, I can't do it"

So contingency plans were made, Frances Whooley, another Irish "barefooter" was contacted and agreed to take the horses for a while which would give us a chance to reorganise the transport arrangements.

Despondent but not feeling quite so sick, Anne returned to her morning cuppa and Martine went trawling through internet forums looking for recommendations for transport companies.

Five minutes later, Anne's mobile rang, one apologetic French transporter: "I've been out of mobile contact for a few days on a delivery to Belgium, yes I can collect the horses Saturday or Sunday"
At the same time, Martine was checking her email, from her sister, "sorry, two sets of four, or fours pairs, my mistake!", another sigh of relief!

So it's all on again, and though neither of us is happy that we won't be there before the horses, at least Anne won't be too far behind them, and the forecast for the travel days is fairly good.

They are being collected from Martine's at 10:30 Friday morning, put away the valium, let the adventure begin..... although neither of us will relax until we see a photo of them grazing contentedly in a paddock in Céreste.


  1. Oh my, you guys sure have your hands full preparing for your trip! Best of luck to you and good luck for your horses with their travels!

    I hope things go much more smoothly from here on out and I can't wait to read what it is like once you get there!

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