Let me introduce myself…my full name is Delfyw Squwiggle, which I know is a bit of a mouthful but Squiggle will do. I'm a part-bred Welsh 13.3hh pony mare and was born in Wales seven years ago. I think the Squiggle part of my name comes form my markings – what do you think?
After a few years of training in Devon, a lady turned up at the farm one day. My trainer, Lynda tacked me up and took me into the big shed and started to show the lady what I could do. I think I did alright because the lady said she'd like to ride me too. We did a few circuits of the shed and then went for a canter up the mountainside. I was put back in my stable for a short time but then to my surprise I was brought back out and loaded into a trailer – I was not amused at this and started to stamp and shout for my friends, but all of a sudden the trailer was moving and I had to concentrate on balancing so I stopped creating a racket. A few hours later and I was led out of the trailer and told we were "home"…and so this is where my adventures really begin, in Lancashire with Karen, Bond and three other horses (Charlotte, Hamra and Looey)
Karen managed to find a saddle and bridle to fit me and we started to go out on little excursions, sometimes on our own and sometimes with one of the other horses and her partner, Bond.
I've always had bare hooves and had coped really well up to this point without but Karen said she needed to get some "boots" for me just in case I ever needed them. Here I am model ling Easyboot Back Country boots – I have to say, they felt a bit odd to start with and I wasn't sure when they used a rubber mallet to put them on, but I'm now used to the whole "booting" thing and think they look rather smart.
And here are Hamra and me model ling Easyboot Gloves – oh, and Bond has some new boots too!
As the weather started to improve, we were getting out and about more and more. One of Bond and Karen's friends started to take me out and although he was a novice rider, he loved going fast, so we got on quite well. Craig didn't last long though – he preferred fishing to riding, and once the fishing season started he didn't come back to visit…oh well, his loss.
In March 2012, Bond and Karen started talking about endurance events and which rides they should enter. Looey said that this is when we start to have accidents and hurt ourselves, but I wasn't sure what it was all about, so I ignored him. Then, one Sunday, we were woken very early in the morning with some nice breakfast. Karen started to plait my mane and put my boots on. Looey and I were then loaded into the trailer and we traveled for just over an hour. We stopped and were unloaded in a large car-park which was full of wagons, trailers and 4 x 4 cars, and lots and lots of horses of all shapes and sizes. We were allowed to have a drink and a munch of some hay while Karen and Bond went off somewhere. They came back with yellow bibs with numbers on the front and back and put them on. We were then tacked up and off we went.
After a few hours, we ended back at the trailer, what fun! Lots of people were milling around, asking who I was, giving me a pat, telling me how gorgeous I was. They also looked at my boots and asked Karen loads of questions about how they stay on, what kind were they, how do I go in them. Well, I think they are great, they are really comfy, they grip really well on the roads and I didn't feel one stone – in fact I'm sure I can go faster with these on than if I was barefoot. Karen took photos of us in our boots after the ride, apparently she has to show EasyCare and other people how well we are getting on in our boots. This is fine with me, I am quite photogenic but I do prefer photos with my whole head and body.
We were then washed down, sweat rugs put on and put back in the trailer to munch hay and have a drink. Looey said that that was my first endurance training ride and that if I'm any good I'll be able to do it all again soon – I can't wait!