No, not like Mister Ed (cue blank looks from anyone under Baby Boomer age...) - I just mean having the opportunity to talk about horses without seeing the listeners' eyes glaze over! I did just that last night - at length - after being invited to do a talk to an open meeting of the Ellen Valley Riding Club. It was a smashing evening - full of laughter and shared tales about horses. My subject was The Great Clydesdale Migration - my brilliant adventure when I rode Clydesdale horses from the Isle of Skye to south Cumbria. I will forever be a huge fan of the magnificent Clydie after that trip - and Shires are pretty special too.
Understandably some of the members wondered why I now have ex-racers instead of a Clydesdale - and it's a good question. In a perfect world I'd have both - and probably a Quarter horse and maybe an Arab, possibly even an Icelandic as well.
I actually think Clydesdales and Racehorses have something very important in common. I know that might sound ridiculous - but here's my point. Both breeds tend to be considered as brilliant at doing just one thing - for the Clydesdale that would be working the land - for the racehorse it would be winning races. Obviously. But both breeds actually have much more going for them - and I like to think I'm doing my very small bit to get that message out. The days of Clydesdales earning their keep on farms may be over, but they can be fantastic riding horses - and racers can go on to do all manner of things once their time on the track is over. What's more, both breeds really deserve to be given that second chance.
Here endeth today's sermon...with pix of a touching moment shared with my all-time favourite Clydesdale - Max.