Collective Noun: An Inferno

We saw the mysterious return of Harry’s 39 degree temperature yesterday evening (I’m going to write a really stern note to someone about this) followed by a Restless, Sleepless and Comfortable night respectively (Harry, Ann, John, in order).  This morning Harry seemed sufficiently himself to frisk merrily amongst his toys, enjoying in particular a boisterous game of Ride the Mummy-Horse. If his future hold on the reins is equal to the death-grip he applies to my neckline, then Pony Club is in the bag.

Harry will be having a pony, by the way. Mummy has spoken. The bruises will be good for him.

There are 3 disused stables at the bottom of the drive; John has any amount of grassland; the Delightful Next Doors are horse gurus; Harry’s Godmother is an equine Vet; we have straw, hay, oats, and barley all in-house; we even own a wheelbarrow. There is NO GOOD REASON why Harry should not have a pony.  And yet, still, the hubby demurs. He is egged on in his opinions by our farmer friends, many of whom have horse-owning wives. Essentially, horses are firmly viewed as a waste of space, land, time and food amongst the chaps, and are colloquially known as Hayburners.

Subterfuge has consequently been resorted to by the ladies. I was told that one girl owns 6 horses, yet her partner is still under the impression she only owns 5, numbers 5 and 6 looking conveniently identical. Another friend quietly inserted a Shetland pony into the furthest outreaches of the garden in the depths of winter, knowing full well that hubby left and arrived in the dark. It was some time before he spotted the cuckoo.

I suppose that John likes horses as much as the next man, provided the one he has put his shirt on comes in at 50 to 1. I have dragged him out riding on holiday and although his technique is lamentable, worse even than mine, he has, infuriatingly, a naturally good seat. Insert-Shetland-By-Stealth friend opines that men sit deep into the saddle in an unconscious attempt to prevent their bollocks from becoming frisbees; and certainly all attempts to unstick John from the saddle once he’s on, have come… unstuck. I have flattered him outrageously about this natural ability, but he still refuses to unbend and agree to learn to ride one properly.

So, Harry has Mummy whispering ‘lots of girls at Pony Club!’ in one ear, and Daddy whispering ‘Burners!’ in the other. It’s a job to know which way he’ll jump in the end, but currently the Mummy-horse seems a winner. We have bottoms of a similar damn size, too.

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