No. He hasn't gone yet. He's kind of "under offer". Kind of. But no sign on his stable door to that effect. Yet.
Meanwhile, lovely Gemma, my son's girlfriend, says she'd like to come riding with us. Fine. We have to go with a hack, because she hasn't ridden at the yard before. Also fine. But J and his horse P are coming too. Not so fine, because Titch cannot stand P.
Titch: Is HE coming with us?
Me: Yes. D'you have a problem with that?
Titch: Yes. He's a nasty common animal, and I don't want to be seen out with him.
Me: Well, that's tough. Just get over yourself, will you? P is nice, and well-behaved, and could teach you a thing or two.
Titch: Whatever. (Titch likes to sound like a teenager, and since on February 24th he will actually be one, I suppose that's excusable. Just.)
So off we set. Four of us. Over the hills and far away in the pouring rain and gusty wind. Horses don't like wind. Or rain. Especially (says Titch) thoroughbred horses. With famous grandfathers. For a while, he behaves reasonably well. Then -
Titch: (Leaping and prancing after tearing up a hill) It's cold and wet. I'm just hating this.
Me: Well, we've got half-way. so you're just going to have to stick with it or we won't get home.
Titch: P is trying to overtake me.
Titch: I'll show him!
Which he does, to the considerable discomfort of his rider (me) who has some difficulty in stopping him. We pause at a gate, and Titch tries to kick P. Twice.
Me: What did you do that for?
Titch: Only what he deserves. Next time I won't miss.
Me: There won't be a next time, and we'll go over here on our own so you can't kick anyone.
Titch: Blah blah blah...
Titch leaps and dances all the way home, muttering about breeding and manners (manners!) and being judged by the comany he keeps. Meanwhile, I am becoming more and more sure that selling him is the best idea I've had in years. When we get back, I'll stick a large SOLD notice on his door. That'll teach him.
But when we get back, Titch (warm and dry in his two rugs, up to his belly in nice clean straw, his issues with poor P forgotten) whickers very sweetly for his carrot, and although he doesn't deserve a treat, I give him two.
Bloody animal. Oh dear. I wish someone would make my mind up for me...