What a week we have had here at Barbury Castle - the crew here have been outstanding! The owner, Nigel, has catered to our every whim - Sara Ike has been tirelessly keeping all the stressed out crew happy and focused. We all have been working hard and having some fun. The sun has also brought some superior weather and everyone seams to have a pink nose!
From jump lessons to fix-a-tests to gallops to barbecues to some big laughs and some tears - these last weeks are so hard. One horse of the crew will always break your heart, and this year was no exception. Northern Spy (Farley) came up with a suspect leg after the last gallop. Colby, Heidi's groom, spent much time helping him out the best she could.... we won?t see Farley this summer - but we will for sure see him very soon!!! He left quarantine today and enjoyed some turnout at David and Jackie Greens next door. Such a kind horse with fabulous floppy ears - he loves his mom as much as she loves him. Such disappointment when you work so hard and get this close. Huge hugs go out to Colby, Heidi and the Whites who support the sport as much as they support their daughter.
The phone call I got at 10pm last night was one of mixed emotions - my good friend, Colby, was so sad for her horse and I was being told to pack up - Mandiba had taken the spot of Farley! I stood out in the barn on the phone and sighed - I think a chestnut pony was helping us out... miss him.
I woke up this morning still feeling a bit numb - that and a chest cold that has set in - bleak! No rest for the weary... riders were getting on at 7am to gallop - THE LAST GALLOP - ugh, had we come so far to be disappointed? Was it going to be someone else? Luckily, all the horses galloped fantastically and jogged GREAT for Brendon Furlong and Cathy Kohn who flew in today for the final checks.
Another jog early in the morning (6am) and then the equipment truck arrives at 12pm for all the gear to go to the airport for weighing, etc. Aubry (Becky Holder's groom), Allyson (Amy Tryon's groom) and I leave at 5:30 tomorrow night to fly to Hong Kong so we can receive the horses when they land. Emma (Phillip Dutton's groom) and vet Sarah Gold are on the flight with the horses that leaves Wednesday morning. Riders leave on Thursday and all of us will be together again in Hong Kong by Friday.
And why do we choose this as our lifestyle? We love these animals so much and take such painstaking care of them - we stay up with them when they are sick, we put blankets on when they are cold, love them, hug them, give them treats -
I am so proud of my young horse - to be stepping on the plane with all the "big guys"- it's like playing pond hockey with Bobby Orr and Ray Bourque. My little man, all grown up...
Time to pack-