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Sorry about the intermission

As I lie here on my bed I'm near exhaustion. My laptop rests on my bent knees hiding the most painful thighs! My eyelids are open for the moment, but I can't be sure for how long. The thought of climbing up and down the stairs is enough to put me to sleep - and this is only today, tomorrow brings the opportunity of experiencing tough, tight muscles, punishing me for not having ridden for so long.

Eleven or twelve years ago I had my last lesson. That's quite a long time. Yesterday I got back in the saddle. I spent half an hour starting off on the lead rein and finishing in a light-seated canter around the arena, having passed my hacking-out test.

Today I signed up for a two hour hack. It started at 1:30 and finished at 4:20... and I had a truly awesome time!

If I'm honest the height-fearing, shark avoiding side of me was a little nervous, and for the first hour, until I'd found my seat, I wondered if I'd done the right thing. But when it's right, it's so right. Ask anyone who rides - the fresh air, fast paced exhilaration is a thrill to be repeated as soon as possible.

By the end of the ride, just after galloping over the downs, when I could no longer feel my toes and the rain was just beginning to spittle down, I didn't care that I'd be walking like a cowboy for the next few days. Or that I'd be tending to a swollen bruise on my knee (after an up-close encounter with a pole).

The playful clitter-clatter of hooves on the ground, the warm smell of horse and leather and the lively thrill of the countryside rushing by. Just some of the reasons I'll be doing this again.


Lucky

ps. If you looking to go riding in Hampshire, try out the Stockbridge Riding Centre

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