Monday, August 20, 2007

Of mud and money

I am always over-awed when I see sportsmen and women performing at the top of their game. Especially, when like yesterday in the rain and mud of the Thirlestane Castle Horse Trials, conditions are not ideal. Horses bounded over giant cross-country fences as if they were tiny logs, jumped off drop fences that looked like they should’ve come equipped with parachutes, and skipped through tricky combinations.

Watching the professionals at work also inspires me; I go home thinking: “I want to jump like that.” But then I return to reality: those were Olympic class riders who have worked for years to get that good.

One thing I am good at is shopping. The monsoon conditions and red clay mud, so different to the Bournville brown of home, didn’t put paid to that. The credit card took a hammering and with it came the associated guilt of spending too much. But what else can you do when Joules tops are half price, Mark Todd jackets are so very reduced, and that new winter rug you’ve been eyeing up for the Grey Mare is £15 cheaper than you’ve seen it anywhere else?


Brom said...

I know the feeling, abeit in a different vein. Many a time I've come back from a gig thretening to sell my guitars the next day.

Although some times an experience like that can be inspiring.

@themill said...

Jobson's have got a Joules sale rail at the moment. Just bought two shirts for the daughter.
Know someone who works for Joules and on the Tuesday of Badminton, two years ago, three of them manning the stall, they took £78,000!!!!!!!!!

@themill said...

BTW I think my nephew was probably competing at Thirlestane. If he was back from Hong Kong where he has been with the Junior Olympics. (As team farrier, I think)

Gill said...

oh dear, I am iggerant and don't know anything about Joules clothes but I am glad you had a good time and found something you wanted to buy. I've been having the same reaction to clothes shops as you have to the telly- it all seems dross!

Anonymous said...

The place we've just visited has an equestrian centre with around 20 horses currently living there. Some in, some out. All in beautiful condition.

Internet shopping - it's much easier!

Crystal xx

dulwichmum said...

Gosh I love a bargain, I would have bought the grey mare a blanket myself for that price.

What a wonderful way to start the day. I love the annual horse show at the RDS in Dublin, I have only been a few times, but it is simply superb.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

oooo, I like the Joules tops, are you the blonde one in the middle? How pretty! And honestly M&M, I could see very little difference between the pic you featured today and the one of you on the grey mare a while ago. Talking about technique in the saddle, not genitalia.
Are you following?!!!

mutterings and meanderings said...

Brom, I am inspired but realistic ...

@themill, I can quite believe the Joules stall takings ...will I know who the nephew is? Very glamorous, an eventing relative. Is he attached? ;)

Gill, there is a thing about Joules clothes and horsy women, and espeically Joules stalls at horse shows -- I think they pump something into the air that attracts; anyway, there we were back to the stall at least four or five times!

CJ, I bet Amy enjoyed all those horses!

DM, the Grey Mare is from Ireland.

Pig, 'proper' Joules girls are just too glamorous .. I can but wish. And thankyou for your complement on my 'technique'!

mutterings and meanderings said...

or even compliment, duh!

Mopsa said...

That looks like a great day out - lots of speed, skill and yummy horses at their peak. And to end the day as requested, here is the clafoutis recipe (great with cherries, blackberries, damsons, or plums (basically purplish soft fruits).
1.5lbs fruit
4 eggs
3 -4 oz sugar (depends on tartness of fruit)plus a handful for sprinkling at the end
4 oz sr flour
2.5 oz butter plus a knob for greasing the dish
9 fl oz milk
Butter a wide shallow oven dish and chuck in the brambles. Beat the eggs in a big bowl and whisk in the sugar plus tiny pinch of salt. Sift the flour in whilst whisking. Melt 2oz of the butter and beat it in. Stir in the milk and you should have a lovely batter. Pour batter over the fruit and dot the top with the remaining bit of butter. Bake at 200 deg C or 400 deg F/Gas 6 for 35-40 mins until the batter is set. If you don't want to serve immediately and want to prevent the lovely risen batter from sinking, turn the oven down to 150C/325F/Gas 3 and bake for a few mins longer. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and serve hot, warm or cold with thick cream. Oh my.

ziggi said...

and it is written thou shalt not come home from a horse or country show without a joules top and something you never new knew you needed for your horse (and this year a hat!)

Karen said...

I feel my card may be getting a hammering in purchasing a dress that is a one off even though it is a little bit more money than I would like to spend but can still afford it.

@themill said...

Depends who your farrier is. Single M&M, but bats for the other side. Totally gorgeous tho'!

GeraniumCat said...

I hope we can expect a photo of the Grey Mare and the new winter rug in due course?

Thinking of clafoutis (and it's being rather hard not to), I find a splash of kirsch, or similar, goes rather nicely in the batter. Scrumptious. I may have to make one on Sunday, as Elder Son will be home.

Marianne said...

I don't know about horse trials, but I do know about shopping in the sales. My wardrobe is already groaning, but it is so hard to resist a good bargain. I hope the grey mare appreciates her rug.

muddyboots said...

gosh & there l was thinking it was you on the x-country phase! joules tops, our local agg. merchant sells them plus aigle as well. york designer outlet has a joules AND crew outlet!! get there!!

Pig in the Kitchen said...

damn, 'he bats for the other side', I was hoping it might work out for you there M&M...maybe he has some mates?!

Lizzie said...

I bought a Joules thingy without sleeves in Northumberland (in the sales of course!) & find it indesputedly marvellous. It's navy/v.pale pink (reversable) but husband said at the time "Darling, I do hope that you will not be wearing it with the pink side uppermost." He thinks that pink is a v.lightweight colour & as such denotes similar in the wearer.

Lizzie x [I don't take much notice BTW.]