Tuesday 11 October 2011

The Horse Diaries (cont)

Well, off we set. It was a very windy day, and wind has a funny effect on horses. Things that don't normally bother them do, and things that do bother them tend to flap about and vindicate all their worst fears.

There were flapping road signs and things in the hedge and wheelie bins (I know. Wheelie bins don't flap, but Titch has been waiting for them to move ever since he first met one, and every rubbish day,when all the bins stand to attention along the roadside, he skirts them carefully, snuffling and muttering under his breath).

Of course, we shouldn't have gone along the road. Big mistake. Cars, vans, bikes, and that long lorry with something strange attached to its back were all causes for concern (he's usually good in traffic). He dannced about and held up traffic and was a bloody nuisance. Crunch time came when he saw something in the hedge (I've no idea what) and plunged right out into the middle of the (busy) road.

Me: What the f***?!
Titch: That was close!
ME: No. the traffic was close. That was a stupid, dangerous thing to do. What if there'd been a car coming?
Titch: Well, I'm a thoroughbred. That's what we thoroughbreds do. They should know that.
Me: Lets get this straight, once and for all. To the casual road-user you are just a horse.
Titch: WHAT?
Me: That's right. You could be any old horse. Carthorse, cob, pony...they're all the same to a driver. They don't - repeat, don't - give a damn about your pedigree.
Titch: Do they know about my grandsire? (Titch's famous grandsire never lost a race, and Titch is a terrible name-dropper).
Me: Most probably not. And if they did, they might also know that your grandsire would not be at all proud of you; that you're a failed racehorse, and that that's why I was able to buy you for a song.

We didn't speak all the way home.


  1. "Just a horse" Titch? Never! He's a star! I'm not surprised he ended up not speaking to you!

  2. Aaaaaa, out into the road! Gives me the willies just to think about it!
    Lovely conversation, however.

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie’s Guide to Adventurous Travel

  3. lovely stuff, Frances... The conversation rocks!

  4. Thanks, Mama Zen!

    Teresa, don't get him started. His grandsire, Raise a Native, never lost a race, and Titch just won't let us forget it.

    Kay, believe me, it gave me the willies, too. I'm just glad that at that moment there was nothing coming, or we'd both have been toast!

    Thanks, Pat. The trouble with Titch is he's all talk. But he's extremely beautiful, so he gets away with it.

  5. A talking horse? Well I'll be damned. He's a smart one, too.

  6. Loved your post Frances - didn't want it to end! I want more...please!

  7. You mean your horse can't talk, Valance? Well, I'll be...!

    Thanks, Diane!

  8. Titch is "just" a horse in the same way HRH Theodora is "just" a cat!! I think the cars should stay off the road out of respect for his high pedigree!! :)

    Judy, South Africa

  9. Love these stories about Titch. Keep them coming, Frances.

  10. With our pony Stitch, sadly now departed, it was flapping black plastic rubbish sacks. There were always more of these on windy days. Windy days seemed to breed black plastic. Ans Stitch would stand still, refusing to move and rolling his eyes.

    The worst time, although not connected with wind, was when a large lorry driver passed us. (The vehicle was large. I don't know about the driver.) Nice and wide and slow. Very kind and solicitous. But his lorry was by then squeezed up against a tree and broke a huge branch off it. The cracking sound was the last straw, even worse than the huge lorry rumbling by. Stitch reared and my smallest daughter slid off onto her back. Stitch danced on the spot while I held onto the lead-rope for all I was worth with a strength I didn't know I had.

    I still can't recall how I gathered up daughter and pony, then led him, simultaneously carrying small child, back to safety.

    I love your stories about Titch and they bring back such good memories of our Stitch.

  11. Judy - too right!

    Thanks, Keith.

    Joanna, I forgot to mention the flapping black plastic. There was plenty of that, too. From your account, it sounds as though Stitch behaved quite reasonably. Titch would have been two counties away!

  12. I bet when Titch's grandsire was winning those races he was where he was supposed to be and not dancing about in the middle of the road? Don't suppose pointing that out will help much though.

  13. No, not really, Patsy, but thank you all the same! Actually, Titch is American, so maybe that's got something to do with it...

  14. That Titch is a caution - in more ways than one! I hope he knows how brave you are taking him out like that, but I suspect he will laugh. You must publish his diary, Frances.

  15. Thanks, Rosemary. But I think - like all (wannabe) celebrities - he would demand too high an advance to interest any sensible publisher. Also, book signings might be a problem!