By Ali Baba Lusitano
Olá, saudações a todos – Hello and greeting’s to everyone!
My “Uncle Colin” from Mitavite has been on at me again to do another blog – I don’t know if he realises just how busy I am. It may be winter now and the competition season is well and truly over – but it seems my rider Jody has bigger and better plans in store for me so there is no rest for the wicked! (They say I’m sometimes wicked – I dispute that).
So I’m busy being trained most days of the week – as a dressage horse you don’t get turned out in the winter like an Eventer might do. Thank goodness I say, or my wonderful big muscles I have worked so hard to procure would go all soggy.
The thing I would really love to do in the winter time is to go hunting. I often dream of jumping big hedges and ditches following the Hounds like my paddock mates here in New Zealand get to do. But alas, Jody says I’m too valuable for all that. Spoil-sport. She let me go out on exercise with the Northland Harrier Hounds but I wasn’t allowed to jump anything. She’s such a tease.
Jody does let me do some jumping. Sometimes she even gets her mates to jump me. That’s good because some of her friends jump higher than she likes to and I love to jump. Winter is a great time for jumping. It’s also great for galloping on the beach. The paddocks here get very wet so the beach is a good surface to go for a leg-stretch.
I love the mud. Jody says mud doesn’t love me. But like I said, I love the mud. In Portugal I had to live in a stable 24-7, unless I was being ridden, then it was more like 23-7. I never got to run around and feel the grass under my feet – and there was no mud anyway! Now I get to go out every day, rain hail or shine. If I’m not out in the fields by 10am I get very grumpy and I’m not that nice to be around. When it’s really wet, like now, it’s so much fun to gallivant about making huge trenches in the paddocks that could hide even a large dog. I come in at night caked in mud, with my tail one big dreadlock. Jody shakes her head in despair... She can’t wait till spring. But I know spring means more work and getting ready for the show season. I’m happy for a bit of downtime, so I hope the cold and rain hangs round for a bit yet.
In my next blog I’m going to tell you the exciting plans we have for the year up till December, but until then, Adeus Meus Amigos!
Ali Baba Lusitano – Munching on Mitavite since 2012
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P.S. Here’s three photos of my favourite winter things: hounds (who I’m not allowed to hunt with), showjumping (with my favourite groom Rebecca) and lastly a nice gallop on Raglan Beach.