Stuart, vacation and Burghley....

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My holiday was great...

Had very strange deja vu riding the 5:10 train from Boston to North Beverly like I did for 5 years when I worked in Boston - stopping in Chelsea, Lynn, Swampscott, Salem, Beverly, North Beverly, Hamilton/Wenham, Ipswich, Rowley, and Newburyport.... weird, huh? Heard it many times! The only thing that has changed is that there is wifi in the cars - and the price....

Tamworth was amazing - great 4th of July parade - tractors, oxen, and singing floats - all very jolly. Dinner that night with about 20 cousins and 3 generations.... very cool - was talked into climbing Mt Chocorua with many of them - thought it would be a nice hike. 2 and 1/2 hours later I was sucking wind trying to keep up with my 18 year old cousin, Jocelyn. We finally got to the top a bit quicker than planned (30 minutes before the rest of the family) - so well worth it for the views. I did have trouble walking for the next 4 days!!!! Watching Wimbleton, naps and trips to Whiteface to put my feet in the freezing water made the trip complete.

Back home after another delayed flight (and some fab seafood at Legal Seafood near the gate) and all ago again - the home crew was so great, again, taking care of the horses while I was gone. Busy getting ready for Stuart....

Hannah, Karen and I left early in the AM with Cathy Weischhoff and her groom Mandy (who had been up for a few days of lessons) all in a row. We had to stop for gas and sending Cathy up ahead of us. Questions were asked which way was the best to go.... lets just say Karen gets and F for navigation. We had a GPS - and we still ended up driving through random towns in Pennsylvania.... Cathy beat us up there by 45 minutes.

Karen had three (Doodle, Rocket and Smartie) in the CIC**, Ivan in the OI and Sammy in the training - and Hannah had Nike in the CIC**

Nike is a cool story -
Dick and Vita Thompson have owned horses for Karen and before her, Jimmy Wofford, for 30+ years. Every winter they go to St Barths for a few weeks. After Joker's Wild retired and Woody was probably having his last season, they decided to buy another horse. Nike was owned and ridden by Lindsay Pozericki from Seattle - Lindsay stayed with us getting ready for Rolex with her fabulous horse, Holy Gallant. She called and said she needed to sell Nike to fund her next trip out to Rolex. With that - Karen flew out and 2 weeks later a red head arrived at our barn in Ocala - his track name was Red Track Shoes - Vita kept calling him "Red Sneakers" or "Red Sandals" - and got fed up with it... She and Kyra Stuart decided to rename him St. Barths - they were in the island on the day.... name stuck. Vita died a year later after a battle with cancer... he was the last horse she bought.

Nike was doing well - we started him doing some training and had just moved him up to Preliminary when he was wacked with EPM - wont try to spell the whole name - but it's a infection of the central nervous system of a small protozoa that leaves them very weak and neuralgic. He spent two weeks in ICU at Morven Park and finally came home very skinny and very wobbly. We couldn't ride him for 6 months - started ponying him - started riding him - and last summer while Karen and I were at the Olympics, Hannah took him back to his first event - 14 months after the illness started. She was doing such a great job that Karen gave her the ride on the horse - as long as she paid the bills.

And 1 year after that... Hannah and Nike rocked Stuart by winning the CIC**. She won from start to finish - she was nervous, but very brave and kept it all together to ride like a star. So composed in the Show Jumping, you would have thought she'd been in that position many times.... we are all very proud of her!!!!

Doodle continued to be great and was 3rd in the 2 star, Ivan was back on great for and was 3rd in the OI and special Sammy was 2nd in the training,,, he continues to be the envy of all - to bad he is NFS, Not For Sale.

Home again -

Back to the kids that didn't travel - Hugh, Bobby, etc. All doing well with the fabulous crew at home.

Exciting news - Karen and Doodle have been given a grant to go to Burghley! WOW - getting very grown up :)! It will be a big step for him - but certainly not out of his reach, Great group of riders that are going - should be an adventure! Hope we keep up and don't disappoint!

More soon - report on training sessions and mandatory gallop!