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Monday, 17 May 2010

Evening all.

I spent my Sunday doing one of my favourite things - watching galloping horses in beautiful countryside. We packed up a picnic, donned our waterproofs and walking boots (what, it's meant to be sunny in May?) and headed onto the motorway. We took a somewhat unexpected detour around Manchester due to the driver forgetting the difference between Salford and Stockport but we got there eventually.

I adore going to watch eventing. There's a very specific atmosphere and it conjures up such great memories for me. It smells of trampled grass and the outdoors and picnics and ice cream and sunshine. There's a wonderful mixture of sounds - galloping horses thundering past, birds singing, the PA system blaring out results and updates, lots of barking dogs, giggling kids and the very English and polite sound of spectators clapping horses and riders that jumped the fences well. Dress code? There's a lot of tweed and expensive looking outdoorsy boots. Basic horsey girl uniform is jeans, lovely leather and suede boots, long sleeved stripy top or rugby shirt and gilet, all accessorised with expensive sunglasses, swishy hair and a dog on a lead. There are always lots of dogs. I'm clearly not cut out to even pretend to be posh - I don't like dogs!

We had a lovely day out. The weather was a tad temperamental (blazing sun one moment, freezing and windy the next) but we had much fun in the shops, watched a birds of prey display, some Pony Club mounted games (insane kids on insane ponies), drank some scrumptious cider and had a fab walk round the course. Chatsworth is a stunning place and we go all the time but it's always nice to explore parts that people don't usually go to (ie outside the main house and gardens).

Ann & Mum sheltering from the wind!

The winner of the big competition, Sam Griffiths and Happy Times.

Zara Phillips (the Queen's granddaughter).

One of the best horses in the world, Headley Brittania. Tiny, feisty and brilliant.

And a random series of photos. I'd love a proper camera with a giant lens so I could take some really good photos when I go to watch the eventing but I am generally impoverished so it's a long term aim. In the meantime I think I do alright with my crappy camera. Action photos aren't easy!


  1. wow, i've never seen shows like these in real life...i only watch with awe on tv..hehe.

    ps. that looks like a very comfortable position under the jealous!

    ♥ vanilla ice cream ♥

  2. Oh how cool, the jumps are all fancy - i love the duck!! lol

  3. So glad you had a good time. It's lovely to see someone so passionate about something they enjoy! I love the duck jump too! x

  4. You got some great photos, i think you got the best spot by the tree x

  5. Fab action shots! The duck jump is cute!

  6. Hi
    That's really nice post and pictures. I have seen the horse rose in the television. I have never witnessed it live. But yes of course I had a ride of horse but I was so scared of it I couldn't ride it for two steps and started screming. LOL

  7. Your writing and pics really give a great feel for what it's like to be there. Have to confess to being a wee bit scared of horses, although they are beautiful. xx

  8. Nice blog! I like the pictures :)


  9. Aren't horses beautiful? So sleek and powerful. They scare me a little too though!

    Sounds like a wonderful day was had by all. Love your mum and Anne sheltering in the tree!

  10. I had no idea they had events like this at Chatsworth - I normally head straight for the tea rooms to sample their amazing afternoon teas. Greedy, moi?


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