It was all going so well. The weather was warm and sunny and we had donned our fashionably equestrian frockery in anticipation of an afternoon trekking in the wilds of Perthshire.
Little did we realise just how wild the terrain would be, even before we reached the starting point! The frockmobile, which had just passed its MOT a few days previously, was not happy negotiating crater sized potholes for five miles along a single track road (with no possibility of turning round). And despite Google maps announcing we had reached our destination, there was still no sign of life, equine or otherwise, for a further two slow, suspension-testing miles. Reassuringly, we had by then been caught up by a three car convoy of fellow trekkers as we approached our destination, but the journey had taken its toll on all our nerves as well as our tyres.
The stable staff and horses were friendly enough, though, and we were soon hatted and mounted on our respective cuddies.
Alison gets to know Gillies
It started off so calmly
So off we trotted along the woodland tracks, taking in some breathtaking scenery along the way. Indeed it was all very relaxed until we were on our way back to the stables when one of the horses bolted, followed by several others, resulting in a few flying riders. The chief frocker managed to stay in the saddle, but poor Fi was thrown, despite truly valiant attempts as a novice rider to hang on. She was badly shaken and cut a sad, bedraggled, muddy figure as we 'hoofed it' the last half mile back to the stables.
Once we had completed the pothole challenge on the return journey, we spent an evening in A&E where Fi was found to have mild concussion but no serious damage. Meanwhile the chief frocker’s eyes had swollen up due to her long standing horse allergy, necessitating heavy duty antihistamines and dark glasses for disguise.
We’ve decided to hang up our jodhpurs and riding boots for the foreseeable future in favour of less punishing pursuits. Our next scheduled adventure is an Eddie and the Hot Rods gig in Glasgow. Nothing could possibly go wrong there – or could it?