Passions and healthy addictions

I have just said goodbye to another horse. I was about to insert exactly how many horses I have said goodbye to over the years but there have been too many to count and if I attempted I would be worried that I missed one if my four legged swishy tailed friends out.

When I say goodbye, I mean their owners have decided to sell them. Since I was 17 I have hot my horsy kicks from riding other people’s horses – it’s what you do when you live horses but can’t afford them. But the downside to this is you have no control over their future. If they go, they go. Regardless of the emotions, time and energy you have given to them. 

The owners had put a lovely wicker duck planter as a present in the feed bin for me, and it was that gesture that brought me to tears – a sadness that was eased by a big horsy hug and a soft kiss on the muzzle. My husband is anti-horses and just doesn’t get the interest. To him it’s just another thing that steals my attention, but the horse bug is stubborn, addictive, thoroughly enjoyable, frustrating but constant. My need to be around horses will remain until death, whether I am riding or simply caring for them, they are awesome. Horses took me to church to get hitched and I would expect them to do the same at my funeral – it’s a health addiction.

Last night I missed a blog post because I was spending the day with another love of my life, my best friend on her very special birthday. We are friends from childhood so share the same passions. The central one being (in addition to horses) a love of speed and Motorsport. So, like any petrolhead, we spent most of her birthday celebrating by careering round a racetrack in a go-cart showing the guys how it should be done. The track had a celebrity wall of lap times, similar to Top Gear, and I was very pleased to have beaten names such as Hugh Grant and Lewis Hamilton’s brother. I was only a few tents of a second away from beating Brad Pitt! Whereas my friend (who races single sweaters regularly) managed to beat The Pitt by a whole second. 

Although exhilarating, it was exhausting as we had spent 40 minutes muscling a go-kart at high speeds (they don’t come with power steering, suspension or traction control) so we did something more predictable of women I their mid thirties and gad afternoon tea outside a country house hotel, switching petrol fumes and engine noise for scones and birdsong. This was followed by another country hotel with a stunning spa set in an oak framed barn and a back and neck massage – utter bliss!

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading. 

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