Galahad has always been good at escaping into places he should not be. If there is a way out of a field he will find it so I really need to be extra careful about checking all the gateways when I turn him out. Sometimes though, I have moments of careless oversight.
I recently turned the ponies out into a small paddock without realising that a hurdle was slightly out of place and had left enough room for a pony to squeeze out. Luckily it only led along our stream, not onto the road and even more fortunate was the fact that I came out and found him very soon afterwards.
I wasn’t too worried – I just had to catch him and take him back. Nobody was in any danger. Then he decided he wasn’t ready for that and jumped into our neighbour’s field (there isn’t much of a hedge there – it is mainly a ditch and a drop from our side). The grass next door was pretty long and it’s quite possible that Galahad did not realise how far down he would actually go.
I had to walk round to the farmhouse and apologise profusely for my pony, whilst still observing social distancing. Then I had to try and catch him. Galahad found himself in a large field filled with far more grass than he has at home. Why would he want to be taken away from that? I spent a very embarrassing time completely failing to get hold of him. He did try a couple of times to climb back over the hedge but it was much harder going the other way!
In the end I resorted to trying to herd him which was also pretty difficult – again, it was a large field and there was only one of me. Eventually though, he allowed himself to be moved up to the farmyard where we could corner him and my Dad could grab hold of his fly mask. I got out of there as quickly as I could!
Galahad had looked very beautiful in all that long grass but it is definitely not an experience I want to repeat!
As I’ve mentioned before, the lockdown meant that Galahad did not get his second clip this winter. That didn’t really matter all that much – especially as I didn’t ride him for so long. It is just a bit annoying that he is still moulting!
More irritating for me though was the fact that his bridle path was growing out. He has so much mane that the bridle path is very useful to have – plus it looks pretty silly when it is growing out and sticking straight up in the air!
I decided though that this at least was something I could deal with and attacked it with the scissors. It may not be quite as neat as it would have been with clippers but it did the job and he looks much smarter again. Perhaps this year I’ll remember to trim it throughout the summer too!
As I work in retail I have been furloughed for the last twelve weeks. However, Monday’s re-opening of shops in England means that I have been called back in and have spent the past few days helping to set up the shop with its new social distancing measures in place.
That has meant some long, tiring days which has obviously curtailed my riding time. The past couple of weeks have been wonderful – I was able to go out and ride or play with the ponies whenever I wanted. It is going to be a bit of a shock going back to being restricted to before or after work only!
Even that hasn’t happened for the past couple of days – I have been drained at the end of the day and haven’t wanted to do anything beyond collapsing on the sofa. Of course, once I’m back into the routine that will change but for the moment the ponies have had a few days off. I don’t think they’re worried!
During lockdown we have of course been limiting our trips out shopping as much as we possibly can. Given that it is difficult to buy all of our own food and the ponies’ food from the same place I have been so grateful that a local tack shop has been driving around to make deliveries in the area. Not just of pony food either – I’ve been able to top up my fly spray, training treats and even dog food too.
We’ve been getting all of our deliveries dropped off at the gate which meant I had an excuse to drive the lawn tractor too which was fun.
I very much appreciated getting the delivery – I do not cope so well with the heat and standing for an hour or so in blazing sunshine queuing to get into the shop would have made me feel terrible. This way was a lot less stressful and I am so grateful.