Since it was my second day back in school today, which was day 2 of our UCAS induction (which was incredibly interesting, especially Debs' talk yesterday in which she used a consistent sporting lexical set throughout to link UCAS applications to the olympics) I thought it would be good to sum up the last 3 weeks. I had a number of things in mind for my 3 weeks of madness...
That night we had just settled down to go to sleep (on a side note, I absolutely hate sleeping in sleeping bags. It's horribly constrictive) when we heard this scuffling, nibbling noise. We both dismissed it at first, but it carried on and we could hear the sound moving around to right outside where our heads were, like a horror movie in surround sound.
1. Camping with Tash (and Dad)
I have been persuading Tash to go camping with me for the last 4 years, so I was delighted when she finally broke and agreed to come on the condition that I bring her tea in bed in the morning. Being the organising freak I am, I planned out in great length where we could camp that was also in walking distance of a horseriding centre.
I finally found Llangorse Lake in the Brecon Beacons, and so we were all packed and ready to go when I thought we should check we would be allowed to camp by ourselves. Turns out we weren't (even though we are probably 'sensible and responsible' they couldn't risk it) so in the end my lovely Dad came with us. We had wonderful weather as shown in the next few photos, and so the afternoon we got there we decided to hire a rowing boat and go out in the lake.
Being the good dad he is, my dad rowed us out into the lake so we didn't kill any of the swans swimming around (or the hoards of kids in kayaks) and then let Tash and I take turns rowing the boat. I think it's safe to say I got the gist of the whole pulling-two-oars-together-at-the-same-time business a little bit quicker than Tash, who, despite her continuous mocking at my lack of balance and general awareness of gravity, was actually the less co-ordinated of us (exhibit A).
|Tash's concentration face|
I should have probably said that Tash hates mice and rats to the extent that I hate bugs, so when we heard this sound she sat bolt upright, eyes round and dramatic (what a diva) and started crying. We first tried scaring the creature away with various loud 'scary' noises, but to no avail.
Oh, and by this time we were both desperate for the toilet. Not good.
Being the brave person I am, armed with a flashlight I ventured outside, much to the chagrin of Tash who thought the creature was going to come in through the zip as I opened it.
I never saw the creature, but what met me when I crept out of our bedroom was a pot of honey. Turns out Tash didn't realise that sticky sweet food would attract unwelcome visitors, so her personal pot of honey that she brought around with her while we were camping (weird, I know) turned out to bring creatures instead of comfort!
The next day, after packing everything up and Dad giving me my first driving lesson around the field (such fun!) we went to the riding centre. When we were offered the choice of having 1 hour for £20 or 2 hours for £30. Being the savvy money saving girl I am, I thought 2 hours was a good deal, so off we trotted (literally), but not before we were assigned horses. This is how the conversation went:
Horse Lady: Have you got riding experience?
Tash: Yeah I rode when I was younger...
Horse Lady: Okay, you can have Whitney.
Although Tash was telling the truth, I think Horse Lady may have thought Tash was a little more experienced than she actually was, as once Tash was on Whitney she realised she had been given the fiesty little pony that wasn't well trained yet, hence why only "experienced riders" can ride her. I was perfectly happy on my slow, ploddy horse Dante, and felt quite smug when I was ambling through the countryside whilst Tash was constantly having to grip the reigns so Whitney would walk and not constantly try and graze.
I blame Tash's "experience" for the series of events that happened next. Horse Lady said we would have a go trotting (which is absolutely horrible and does not do favours for the backside) and so off we bounced.
Whitney doesn't just trot though. Whitney isn't trained enough to trot with all the other horses in a nice line. Oh no, Whitney likes cantering freely. So off she canters, and Dante was suddenly not the slow ploddy horse I thought he was, but a wannabe Whitney, so off he canters too. Before when we were trotting, I thought I was about to fall off in a very ungraceful manner every 2 seconds, so needless to say I thought I was going to die when Dante bolted and started dashing across the field, ignoring my feeble effort at pulling the reigns.
Apart from me waving at someone who I thought was my dad but was actually just a butch woman (she was far away, okay?) the rest of the horseride was pretty normal, although if you are ever offered the choice of a 1 hour ride or a 2 hour ride, always choose the 1 hour. 2 hours sufficiently bruised our backsides to the point that once we got off our horses we could barely walk.
And so our fun packed 2 days had come to an end. I think this next photo sums up how much fun it was (Tash'll love me for including this beauty of a photo).
I was planning to write about my other adventures, but seeing how long that one took to write about, I'll finish this blog post another time - ooh the suspense!
Also, I have brownie camp this weekend (as an leader (Eagle Owl, nice to meet you), not a brownie, before you ask) and then the week after I have my D of E practice expedition (oh the joys!) so I'm sure I will have plenty to write about in the next few weeks!
When I told Mr Blanche a while back I wanted to be a journalist, he asked me what I wanted to write about, to which I replied my life. He laughed and said sarcastically "Today I had beans on toast for breakfast..." but the amount of weird situations I frequently get myself into prove that I could probably write about my life and might possibly be able to get away with it. We shall see.
I'll leave you with a piano piece that I have almost finished learning, it's absolutely beautiful. I play it a bit differently to this recording, but you can get the gist.