Follow my exploits with my Welsh Section D, Santana. I first saw him as a 2 year old colt and he became mine as he turned 3 in June 2008. Registered as Ridgehill Ellis (sire Ridgehill Elgar, dam Tardebigge Enid) he is my pride and joy! This diary is a record of progress.
I haven't blogged for ages. There are various reasons, not least of these was the death of my Dad. I still cannot, and probably will never, believe that he has gone. The pain is still there, as strong as ever, but I guess you eventually learn to live with the loss.
Another huge shock to me was the sudden death of the farm owner, Tom, at the age of 70, just two days before my father's funeral. I have known Tom for only about six years, but in that time I have seen him almost every day. He has been my friend and mentor and he has shared so much of his incredible knowledge of horsemanship and experiences with me. If it were not for Tom, I would not have bought my first horse, I would not have gained the experience I have of riding and training young horses, and I would not have had the confidence to break and train Santana. All this was done under his close supervision and guidance. His funeral was attended by approximately 400 people which is testament to the immensely high regard people had for him and the number of lives which he has touched.
At first I felt that all that wealth of knowledge and experience had been lost but, on reflection, I realise that, in fact, he was so generous with his knowledge that he has passed much of it on to so many people, not least his four children and his grandchildren, as well as friends like myself.
We spent many a happy afternoon lunging young ponies with my daughter on board, Tom and I both on the end of the lunge (in case the pony took off!), and Tom would pour out his stories of the old days. He was fascinating to listen to.
I am proud to be able to say that I knew Tom and could call him my friend. I will also be forever grateful for everything he has done for me and my daughter over the last few years.