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

Sunday, 8 January 2012

And back to horses…

We mentioned that both horses felt “anxious” on the very first hack.  GiGi shows her anxiety by extreme reluctance to stand still, which can make life a bit hairy if we’re allowing cars to pass us!  Flurry, on the other hand, shows his anxiety by marching forward briskly, which means GiGi gets left behind a bit.  He also feels incredibly tense – I can feel his rib-cage bulging out against my legs sometimes.

The second day we hacked out, they felt much the same as the first day at the start, but Flurry got progressively more and more tense, until eventually he exploded and attempted to gallop off down the lane.  I hung on to him determinedly, as I was afraid of him stumbling badly on the rough ground and falling… he settled down again quickly, but still felt tense all the way home.

After that ride, I was left thinking “that’s not my horse… why is he behaving like this?” and I asked myself what advice would I give a livery owner with a problem like this.  The first thing would be to cut the feed.  The second thing would be to increase the work.  This is where we have our catch 22 – they need their Renegade boots to do more work, but GiGi can’t wear her boots until the PHW wraps come off.  The best I can do is lunge Flurry in the (unsurfaced) small lunging ring at La Florentine, but Fani is very protective of her ground and will only allow it to be used when the ground is very dry.

Fortunately it's dry at the moment, so that’s the current plan.  It’s worked really well so far - ten minutes lunging in walk and trot seems to get the "tickle" out of Flurry's toes.  He's back to his normal “ho-hum” self, and GiGi has calmed down so that she’ll stand quietly without pawing the ground most of the time.

Until we met this lot, that is:

This is the local flock of sheep (and a few goats) that roams the nearby hillsides, accompanied by a shepherd and two dogs.  GiGi heard the bell of the lead sheep, saw the sea of moving "blobs" and went WTF??  Head up, tail up, nostrils and eyes out on stalks.  Flurry, strangely enough, was not so bothered, but we agreed that discretion would be the better part of valour, and we altered our route to avoid the flock.
Fani told us afterwards that even her seasoned trekking horses get excited when they see the sheep being moved, so I guess we didn't do too badly!

The horses were moved to another field today, so that they don't completely trash the paddock beside the yard.  Ugoline, their field companion, went too, and we walked the three of them down to the new field with Ugoline's owner, Severine. 

It was a bit of an obstacle course getting them there 

but they were all very well behaved.

The forecast for the next few days is good, night-time temperatures should not fall below freezing, so we have decided to leave their rugs off.  If the temperatures drop again we can always revert to rugging up at night time again.
Flurry assesses the neighbours
Anne and I are both stuffed up with a cold.  Hopefully we won't get any worse, so that we can stick to our "riding every day" plan.

All photographs on this post are courtesy of George Greenlee.


  1. Hey where's the picture of me riding bareback?

  2. I don't want to worry you, but I brought that cold back to England with me and it's the worse one I've ever had!

  3. Think you both need a few hot whiskeys!!

    Glad the horses are settling down!

  4. @Richard it's pretty bad I have to say. I'm hoping to turn the corner tonight.
    @Clive, hot whiskey sounds good.... hey you're some cool assistance dog offering it to us, I bet you could make it yourself & all!

  5. I envy the lovely dry weather and ground conditions you have over there!! Hope you get over those colds soon and enjoy more riding.

  6. Well my cold was on the mend, but today it's spread from my chest to my head, grrr. Lovely hack yesterday though, met the sheep again, with less of a reaction this time, nevertheless we took a detour. Out for about 45 minutes but their little feet were a bit tender towards the end.