My grey mare is the most wonderful horse in the world. She has eyes like melted dark chocolate, a velvety muzzle, and in the summer, dapples are scattered across her bottom like the splodges on an Ayres rocking horse.
She (usually) canters over when I call; she rests her head on my shoulder and blows in my ear, while expecting nothing in return but her dinner. She is my passion in life.
I am not alone in that opinion. The little minx has not one, but two, boyfriends. You can’t blame them for being besotted with her. I imagine she’s the equine equivalent of Marilyn Monroe with her Bambi-eyed gazes and voluptuous figure.
Boyfriend No.1 is a charmer, a long-legged bay former point-to-pointer. I always thought it was a proper love thing going on between them.
Boyfriend No.2 is also bay and although not the tallest horse in the world, he's quite possibly the biggest in Northumberland. Standing 18.2hh, he’s built like the proverbial brick outhouse. I consider the grey girl’s relationship with him to be political, as he’s a great Lord Protector and doesn’t let anyone chase her away from the hay in the field.
The first chap has been on box-rest because he had a poisoned foot. He gets pretty stressed when he’s kept inside, so imagine his delight when madam came in for her tea. He whickered repeatedly with a rhythm like a road drill, sounding like one of those overly vocal actor-horses on Rough Diamond. It’s funny how horses in dramas seem to spend all their time whinnying. I mean, have you heard the horses shouting away at each other on Black Beauty?
“Look,” I said, “there’s your boy.” Madam gave him a cursory sniff, turned to me as if to say: “Where’s my tea?” then proceeded to ignore him. I don’t know what he’d said to upset her. She was rather off with him the next couple of times she came in too, even though he shouted piteously in a Rough Diamond-esque fashion when I took her back to the field.
Today he was well enough to be turned out. After being inside for nearly a week he was on his toes and, ignoring the rest of the herd, he tit-upped over to my mare. They arched their necks, sniffed, leapt and bucked, then went off for a hoolie around the field together. Love, eh?