A hard day’s work

When you have horses, there are always jobs that need to be done. Recurring jobs, like preparing feeds, sweeping the yard, tidying the field shelter and poo picking. During the day, Minnie and Cassie basically have the run of the place, but now that winter is at our doorstep I keep them in a 3/4 acre field where they have access to the field shelter at night. And if I don’t remove their droppings, they’ll be knee deep come spring. I don’t always get the chance to do this every day, due to work and family commitments, but I do it three or four times a week. So, this morning, after I had taken Cassie for a walk, I went out on field tidying patrol.

Then there are maintenance jobs. I have a picadero and unfortunately recent torrential rain washed the sand out under the kick boards, leaving holes in the corners and at the back.

I think that the best thing to do would be to fill the gaps with gravel and cement, so today I shoveled all the sand back from the exposed areas, ready for the cement to be poured in later this week if I can find the time.

Then there were a lot of weeds trying to invade the picadero. Or, to be precise, nettles and briars.

I had intended to cut them down later this year, to give them time to wither away first, but now that the picadero needs fixing, I have to be able to walk around it. So, out with the clippers (hand clippers unfortunately, no such thing as petrol powered hedge trimmers in this house) and in I went.

It was like trying to cut back the jungle, but at least I got nice company. Minnie and Cassie got curious and came into the picadero to see what I was doing.

Cassie of course couldn’t resist a nice roll

Then they wandered around for a bit, picking at the clipped nettes and bits of grass growing at the edges, until Cassie decided it was time to leave and chased Minnie out of the picadero.

Minnie was wondering what that was all about.

By the time I was finished in the picadero, Minnie and Cassie had already made their way into the yard, waiting for their evening feed. I gave them their buckets, put their hay out and went to the house. After labouring all day in the sweat of my brow, not to mention being covered in nettle stings and briar scratches, I felt a glass of wine was very well deserved.

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5 thoughts on “A hard day’s work

  1. My dad used to do the old “grasp the nettle” thing, where he’d grab it hard, and he wouldn’t get stung. Never mastered that trick myself.

  2. When I built my picadero I basically had an area of hardcore fenced off. The kick boards were put in place to keep the sand in, but because it’s on a very slight gradient the sand gets washed out at the back. Unfortunately for me, I’ll have to put in a bit of work again before all my sand is gone!

    My hands are still tingling with nettle burn; sounds like a useful trick, “grasping the nettle”, but obviously a talent I sadly lack. Of course it would have been a good idea to put some gloves on before I started!

  3. My picadero is a hexagon. I wanted to maximise the space I had available, but I didn’t want it to be a round pen, it’s better to have corners. It is just over 20 x 20 m. so I can ride a 20 m circle in it.

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