This is the last post of 2020 so I take a look back at a year that I want to forget but also remember the many firsts that I and Fred have achieved! This year has been one like none before, with lockdowns, masks, tiers, social distancing, and bubbles all being new concepts to learn and adapt to!
When the pandemic first struck and a national lockdown was introduced riding was halted, mainly due to fears of putting added strain on our NHS if a fall should occur. We moved yards around a month into the lockdown and the horses were allowed to settle into their new environment. Gradually riding was slowly restarted in the field and it was great to get back on, I do get a bit down when I don’t manage to ride for a while.
At the first opportunity to do something fun this year, we attended our first ever endurance ride to accompany fellow blogger and para rider Fran from Galloping Dinnerplates. Fred was exceptionally well behaved to say he had never traveled to an off yard event. He traveled well and was his usual relaxed self during the ride. We won our first rosette and got some lovely photos taken of us riding around the farm.
Later in the year, we attended our first amble, we got to dress up fancy and the ride was a very relaxed ride around farmland and down to the river and back. Fred was very relaxed again to say he was again in a new place. It would have been nice to have done more but lockdowns have meant that many horse events have been cancelled. I have certainly missed attending events such as horse trails and shopping at shows such as Your Horse Live.
This year has certainly been tough but I am thankful for many things and Fred keeps me in good spirits, I do get a bit down when I haven’t seen him for a while, and having limited time with him is hard as previously I have spent hours at the yard just spending time with him. Covid has definitely caused some up and down moments in all aspects of my life, yet I have continued to work throughout and even moved house!
One thing we have been getting better at this year is jumping, we have been having the odd lesson and also joining in the yard fancy dress jumping sessions. Fred is certainly good when it comes to being dressed up and hasn’t been fazed. I do find that horses are very accepting of the things that we do and I feel honoured to ride these fabulous animals. At the recent Christmas jumping, we had great fun and jumped the highest we ever have! Hopefully, we can continue to improve and possibly even get a little higher.
Now as we are at the end of 2020 and we are again back in a partial lockdown there is a glimmer of hope for 2021 as the new vaccine is rolled out. Fred has certainly helped me to get through this year and we have explored many new places along with doing more and more hacking alone which allows me to escape by myself and have some headspace. One thing us equestrians know about is social distancing and there’s no better way of doing that than with your horse in the middle of nowhere.
So, for now, we say goodbye and to wish you all a happy new year. See you all on the other side!!