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  • Samantha Lissington

Big move and Blenheim

I’m sitting in the truck on Thursday at the Sanyong Blenheim Palace Horse Trials, a bit of Jack Johhnson on the stereo, and time on my hands before a hack with Sooty this morning…

…Jokes, 4 days later and I finally get around to finishing this – so much for getting things done at a 3DE!

I better keep this one short after the novel of last time.

Monday morning after Burghley we packed up 5 horses and my flat, moved the horses to Buttermere, and got the keys to my new flat in Hungerford (about 15min from the yard).

It is beautiful here, and we have had some glorious days in the sun to appreciate it. I’ve had the same lost feelings as when we first moved over – not knowing the yard and your new systems makes everything feel unsettling, but it is a familiar kind of feeling this time around ;)

The horses are a bit uneasy again, but not to the same extent as before, and I’m sure in a couple of weeks’ time we will be right on track again.

We have a bit of a unique set-up being established here; I am riding 5 to 6 horses on behalf of Jock, who will make it over to the UK for approximately 2 months of the year. As for the rest - my job is to keep his team fit and healthy, and to prepare them for the events that he is aiming for. I’ll run my team alongside Jocks horses, and will continue to hunt down the support I need to retain and develop my own string of ideally 6/7 horses.

We pulled Rui’s shoes off this week, and he is now in a big paddock with a couple of retired horses – hopefully he looks as fat as them in 2 months time when we pull him out again!

Jasmine has had a foot abscess so she’s been out of action but luckily Sooty has been on form, and really had a great three phases at Blenheim this week. All going well we now look forward to our last big adventure for the season; Boekelo three day event in the Netherlands - and Sooty’s first CCI4*-L format competition.

Mum and Dad have been absolute total legends and have spent days-on-end tripping to Reading and back to help make my flat feel more like a home.

Sidenote 24: Dad has probably attained the highest IKEA assembly qualifications in the process.

I haven’t had a second to spare this week, so without them I would still be sleeping on the floor (which we actually did on Wednesday night because the bed delivery didn’t turn up in time!)

I said goodbye to them this morning which was a sad / happy occasion. We definitely made the most of their time here, although the expectations are now pretty high since I took them to both Burghley and Blenheim in the space of 2 weeks!

Some great news came through today that Brayden has made the cut for the New Zealand Futsal Whites team. They now play in the World Cup Qualifiers in New Caledonia at the end of October. Then the countdown is on for him to join me here in the UK!

All in all we are making progress.

However I do get a little more anxious every time I see evidence of Springtime arriving in New Zealand, because we all know what that means on this side of the world…

Winter Is Coming…

Over and out, Sam


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