Just before lockdown was implemented, it had been arranged that Florence would go to stay with my sister Michelle so her point to pointer, Treat Yourself, could come to the yard to use the horse walker.

The ban on unnecessary movement put this on hold, but we finally managed to do the swap, and Treat Yourself is now staying in Florence’s stable. Mabel and Diva continue to live out apart from in the worst of the weather.

Was I a little upset that Florence practically loaded herself onto the lorry with not even a backwards glance? I think she too was looking forward to going somewhere new and hopefully will be doing some fun rides whilst she is with Michelle.

Treat has settled in really well and seems to enjoy going on the walker. He is huge compared to Florence and has a very long stride, so I tend to trot at the side of his long-legged walk!

Michelle and I regularly update each other on our horses, and Florence has been enjoying the company of both Melland Jackson Jive, Michelle’s Shetland pony, and Julius Caesar, her coloured traditional pony. Those two do not get on, and so I think they quite enjoy having Florence’s company when out in the field.

I am not sure which of the horses is the dirtier in their bed, Florence or Treat, or which would guzzle the most hay given the chance! One thing about Treat being a plain bay is that I don’t have to worry about stable stains, while poor Michelle is having to keep dirtball Florence poo-stain free!

Mabel and Diva have always been close, but without Florence (Mabel’s daughter) to intervene, I think that they have got even closer. They are good friends despite the eighteen year age difference and Mabel will even join in occasionally with Diva’s daily gallops around the field.

I can’t believe we’re already more than halfway through the year. This time last year I was planning my trip to the Shetland Isles. I absolutely loved the place and will definitely return. Around midsummer’s day the islands barely get dark, and I have included a stunning photograph of Shetland pony mares and foals taken during the simmer dim as it is known locally. The photographer, Sheena Anderson, has given permission for its use.

It looks as if some shows, clinics and fun rides are beginning to be able to be held again, and so hopefully everyone can have some fun competing etc. But please remember to socially distance, keep washing your hands and stay safe! See you next time.

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