Yesterday: cut across the end of the Common and down a track to the main road. Then along the road in sunshine with plenty of traffic, mostly slowing down and giving us lots of space but some showing how little idea they have of the speed with which a horse can go sideways ...... Strider was steady but going with no energy. Coming into Winchcombe the narrow street had cars parked as usual and lots of traffic both ways having to give way, get onto the pavement etc. Strider was good as gold! Stood in queues, stood to the side to let the bus and other traffic overtake us, stood and waited for ages while the bus was at the stop in the square. A GOOD BOY. Going home up the back lane and via Langley we got more energy and we got very steady behaviour past 100 yards of trench digging, red plastic fencing, huge reel of yellow plastic pipe etc. It looked like a Sheila Reed spook busting special. Home in a bit under two hours.
Today forecast showers but warm. I decide not to wear a waterproof as I would rather be a bit wet than too hot ............ Up to the Common into a stiff breeze and heavy shower for a mile or so. And he just trotted steadily on. Not liking it but just getting on with going. I was thoroughly wet. Down past Wontley with its normal quota of horse flies. Through the wood and out onto deserted lanes. We met one car. 90 minutes after leaving the yard we stopped in the lee of a wood for a graze and a snack for me, then turned for home with a short walk before I remounted. Back the way we had come. As we got back up towards the Common the wind turned stronger and colder and the rain changed from "wet" to "lashing in". I went from damp to soaked in minutes and my left boot filled with water. Strider just trotted on. Not too happy but making no fuss. We crossed the top and came down a bit and had a canter, then steadily on home sort of looking for how to keep out of it if possible. Back over the top and into the wind but soon down to the gate and shelter. We came into the yard sodden! More than 2.5 hours. He got on with munching hay. I went home to hang up everything to dry and have a hot bath. Very happy for such a good ride and good Boy.
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