The big day had finally come, and after a lovely restful night’s sleep (not!) we went to the yard to load up and head off.
A quick flick over to remove the dust and shavings from the ponies and then tail bandages were applied before we loaded them up. Both Jackson (Melland Jackson Jive) and Diva (Melland Queen of Scots) loaded well and were tucking into their well-stuffed haynets before the ramp was up. We clicked Flora into her car harness and off we went!
With all the safety checks done on Bee (our horsebox) the night before, we could just set the satnav and drive away. There are several routes to Ingliston, all of which take more or less the same amount of time, so we opted to go on the A1 initially and go up the east side of the country.
Flora took no time at all to get back to sleep in her bed on the front seat, and before we knew it, we were halfway there! We stopped for a bathroom break, a leg stretch and a pony check. They were happy and had a sip of water when we offered it.
We didn’t realise the road took us through the Tyne Tunnel, so that was a new experience. Once we’d made it north of Newcastle, the countryside was beautiful and for quite some time we were driving close to the coast. Traffic was light, so I could sightsee a little as I drove and seeing Bamburgh Castle in the distance evoked memories of a trip there years ago, it is a simply stunning place.
The directions from the show details said to follow the signs for Edinburgh Airport and then the show signs from there. On arrival, we were given hi-vis waistcoats to wear when within the showground itself as it was still being set up. We found the ponies’ stables and got them settled in before taking the lorry out of the unloading area to park up for our stay.
Little did we know that the parking is literally alongside the runway! It was a tad disconcerting to spot a plane taking off out of the corner of my eye as I was driving the horsebox to the livestock parking. Once we had our spot for the week, we went about converting Bee from horsebox to camper van.
Before heading off to bed, we took Flora for a walk to check the ponies were okay after their long trip. I don’t think Flora appreciated that she had to share a camp bed rather than the usual double bed, but once she established that she could make me hang off the side to accommodate her sprawling out (for a little dog she can certainly take up lots of room) she was soon fast asleep.