Saturday, 28 October 2006

I completely forgot to tell you...

...that Dan has passed her theory driving test. She passed it on the second attempt, and has now booked her actual driving test for the 10th November! I keep telling her that all the best drivers fail the first time (and not just because I did) and that nobody keeps on failing it for ever(!)

Her Dad took her out driving a few weeks ago and when they returned he was ashen and mumbling something out "hypnotherapy might help her.....dangerous....how much have I spent on lessons so far?..."

We'll just have to wait and see...fingers crossed!

Friday, 27 October 2006

BMW drivers and Leprechauns

Tonight, whilst on my way home from the stables and trying to filter my car out into the main road from a very busy side road, I accidentally bumped into the car in front, which was a rather posh, large BMW 5 series saloon. I only nudged it, and I was hardly moving so I knew that no damage would have been done.

However, the driver of the BMW got out, looking rather angry, came to my window and knocked sharply on the glass with his knuckles. He asked me in a very terse tone "What happened?". (You didn't actually need a PhD to work out what had just happened, and I found his question really funny!) Well, I'm sorry - but I couldn't resist. With a straight face I calmly told him that a little leprechaun all dressed in green had just run between our cars and hit his rear bumper with a big wooden mallet.

I know, I know...but I just couldn't resist. To the driver of the BMW...I apologise unreservedly.

Sunday, 15 October 2006

She won a Rosette!!!

Today Dan and Bugsy went to a Cross Country competition - they both worked really hard and Bugsy was a very good boy. So good were they - in fact - that they won a very nice orange rosette for 9th place (out of 22).

They may not have come first - but it's more than good enough for me...I'm so proud!!!

Saturday, 14 October 2006

Alzheimers

I know it's late - 1.37am - but a few minutes ago, whilst waiting for the kettle to boil...to make my bedtime hot beverage.... I couldn't find my mobile phone to put on charge while I'm sleeping. Searched in my briefcase, handbag...looked in the bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, hall...all the usual places....went outside to check in the car. After about 10 minutes of fruitless searching I decided (using some spock-like logic) to use the house phone and call my mobile....I did suspect that I may have left it at the stables, seeing as my Mum had phoned me earlier to tell me that she had finally been for the "Back and Shoulder Massage plus Manicure" that I had paid for as a birthday gift for her back in April.

Anyway it rang and guess where it was? Right in front of the kettle. DOH...DOH...DOH....the onset of Alzheimers is marching in at an alarming pace.

Wednesday, 4 October 2006

Bird flying the nest

Last weekend Dan went to Sheffield, and while she was there visited Nottingham University, Equine sciences department. She wants to study Equine sports rehabilitation - so she can prevent race horses and event horses being "got rid of" when they are no longer useful. They can easily be re-trained for riding or pleasure horses when their primary job is done, and this is what she would like to do. Very admirable.

It got me thinking though that we are nearly at the end of a long journey - that is me being the primary figure in her life. When she goes away in September I will just become the woman that she visits (and brings her laundry home to) every third weekend. The one that she no longer tells everything to - I will so miss our little chats that we have in the car on the school run each day. This year, because we have moved down south, we have been together more than before because she didn't know anybody else and neither did I...also we have the horses together and so spend about 3 hours at the stables together every night.

For seventeen years she has been my primary focus...her needs and wants have taken priority over everything else...even down to the food I buy....because I have to buy the things that she likes to eat - otherwise she would starve!!!!

Half of me is looking forward to this change as I will have more free time and more money (!)and most change is an opportunity for improvement. It will be great for her to move away from home and make new friends, learn new things and become independant...my only worry is that I may suffer from "Empty nest syndrome" and turn into one of those barking mad 40 plus year old women...who go a bit menopausally loopy because their primary focus has been removed.

I can see me driving to Nottingham twice a week to take her baked pies, and change her bedding. Someone has to make sure she doesn't live on "Pot Noodles".

I'm so proud of her as she is very bright, hardworking, determined, funny, kind and gentle....oh my goodness....I'd better start looking for a University within a 5 mile radius so she can some home every night.

I suppose I could always take up "Spanish for Beginners" at night school, or "Macrame for the hormonally challenged"

Sunday, 1 October 2006

Train the Trainer

This week I have spent 3 days in London (Holborn) on a "Train the Trainer" course run by Reed. I went with my good friend Trish who is our company's HR manager. I have to say that the train/tube method of travel is okay if rather cramped, and I was concerned about the transmission of germs and cold bugs - bound to happen when you nose and mouth are millimetres away from a stranger.....yuch! Talk about sardines!!!

As part of the course we had to do 2 training presentations to the rest of the group (about 8 of us) lasting 15 minutes each which were video taped for posterity.

I love doing this as you are in control of the group and can pretty much make them do anything in the guise of a "Group exercise". On tuesday I had everyone on their feet riding an "Imaginary" horse...the rising trot movement was a joy to behold and most members of our group would have a future in porn movies should they lose their present jobs!!!! When we moved onto the hip movements for canter I could hardly keep a straight face.

My second presentation was about Pest Control, and most importantly the visual differences between Mice (mus domestica) and young rats (rattus norvegicus). Again I had the group participating...this time on their feet doing impressions of squeaky mice and scratchy rats.......fantastic!!!

If anyone would like to hire the videos....just let me know!!!

(By the way I got top marks for originality!)

Now I have been on the course I am free to create training courses for our company's various departments. The clue here is for them not to piss me off or I'll have them doing all sorts of daft and embarassing things under the guise of "Training". Watch out the Sales Department - that's all I can say!!!

Update on Phoebe's Haircut

Because I know you were all worried (!) I have to report the Phoebe's haircut went rather well!!! She was as good as gold, although initially a bit miffed when all the other horses on the yard went out to the fields and she had to stay home alone!! (Cue much whinnying and fast pacing around her stable). The clippers didn't overheat and burn her skin, and this year for the first time she let me go right to the little back bit between her legs where her nipples are (usually very sensitive and ticklish) and never even swished her tail. By the time I had finished - about 2 hours - she was so relaxed she was falling asleep.

I expected her to be a bit fresh in my riding lesson yesterday afternoon - by virtue of the fact that she can now feel my leg more on her sides and also the breeze gets right to her skin - but no - she was as good as gold. Last night for the first time she had to be rugged up in the stable to keep her cosy and I have to tell you with pride that her stable fleece rug is very bright pink and has a leopard skin pattern to it (she look's like an equine Bet Lynch)...lovely!!!

I really love my horse with all my heart - she's such a good girl - and have to admit that the more time I spend with her, the less time I want to spend with people...maybe it's because she doesn't answer back!!!!