Hay nets!!! 😱

OK, so this is probably my 1st post written entirely from a blindy point of view (if you see what I mean); and believe me, it’s not a new subject as far as I’m concerned , but hay nets are most definitely the brainchild of some very spiteful demon, who’s job it is to make my life as difficult as possible .😈

For the non-horsey out there, a haynet is a string bag used to feed hay to stabled horses. Imagine Rab C. Nesbitt’s string vest, with attitude! Now imagine trying to stuff it with reluctant dried grass, while wearing a blindfold.😉 The idea is that by feeding hay in a net that is hung up , there is les waste, and you can at least try to control your horse’s intake. Some hay nets have large holes, some small holes, there are big ones and small ones, some are built around a metal ring, some have metal eyelets for their drawstring to run through, others don’t. What they all have in common is that when they are empty they magically transform into confusing bundles of uncontrollable, uncooperative string.

There used to be a TV Programmme back in the 70’s and 80’s called “It’ll be Alright on the Night”, that showed out takes from TV programmes from all round the world. I’m sure it was there that I saw a clip of a child trying to put an eel in a jar. I have no idea why. Every time this poor, long-suffering kid managed to successfully get the eel coiled up in the jar and reach for the lid, the eel would Spring out like a jack-in-the-box and the whole process would start again. Over the years of filling hay nets I’ve developed a deep empathy and respect for that child.

It goes like this:
First find a haynet. Even though I was the one who deposited the empty nets in the barn, they are never quite where I thought they were.
Next try and work out where the top is. This is easier with the kind of net that has a large metal ring in the bottom. By grabbing hold of the Ring you can turn the net upside down, and holding it up in the air, allow the drawstring to dangle free so you can catch it and , there’s the top.
Open the net. Are there any knots in the drawstring ? Or, worse, is it broken? A good feel about needed here.
Now start stuffing hay into the net. So, where’s the top again? Oh no! Have I just missed it from point blank range? No! Please don’t tell me there’s a hole in it!

I currently do this 9 times a day.

I’ve tried other ways of feeding hay,, but have decided that using hay nets is by far the most efficient and a least wasteful. Yes I do find it difficult, but when I’m listening to that lovely sound of three happy horses contentedly chewing on hey, it all seems completely worthwhile.

Back on Top

So , Florence arrived here on 15th November, and up until about roughly 3 weeks ago it’s been wall to wall monsoon/hurricane ever since! Couple this with several trips to the John Radcliff , and she hasn’t done a stroke of work since arriving . Until last week that is.

You know what it’s like though. The longer you put off doing something , the bigger, more difficult, and, downright more scarey, it becomes . So after not sitting on her since trying her at the beginning of November, the thought of actually riding Florence had grown into a dirty great ferocious mind monster. Instead of a slightly opinionated , but unflappable cob mare, my mind had transformed Flo into a wild, unbroken stallion!

I needn’t have worried. Last week I braved myself up and got on board. Prepared to bale out at the slightest provocation , I ended up going all the way round the block! Further than I’ve ridden in yonks! She didn’t put a foot wrong ! We’ve been out again since.

Hal’s got back on Leonie too. Like Flo, Leo hasn’t done anything all winter, and, like Flo, she’s been a very good girl.

Here’s to a long years riding ahead.