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June 10, 2011

Nat Speaks The International Language Of Stall Mucking

Nat Varcoe-Cocks didn't let a grumpy hotel manager stand between her and her morning coffee. Molly Sorge Photo

Do you speak English???

This seems to be the starting point of any conversation here in Germany.

Well, apart from being harassed yesterday morning by the hotel manager regarding the size of my massive coffee mug (I don’t go anywhere without it) all is good. I had to defend myself against the giant-sized manager after he was unimpressed that I had filled the entire contents of one of their coffee pots into my mug.

Trying to explain that I don’t eat breakfast and that coffee was the elixir of my life was taking some convincing. I would have taken him down if he had dared tried to remove it. The girls and Will watched in awe as we both puffed up and stood our ground. Of course, I won, and this morning when I gave him a cheer with my full mug, I do believe he smiled.

It was pointed out to me yesterday that I have an uncanny knack of being able to communicate quite clearly without speaking a word of German. This was noticed when I asked if some people at the farm where we’re staying until moving to the showgrounds if they had a wheelbarrow we could borrow and if it was OK to dump the shavings in the straw manure pile. Their response was showing me a wheelbarrow and what I took as ‘yeah no problem.’ I always thought it was just the fact that I got louder, but apparently it’s more about the hand gestures and body action. I always was good at charades!

On to the horses and people. Chunks of time on both Thursday and Friday were spent in the largest tack store I have ever been in. It has wall-to-wall tack and britches and, as Kelly yelled out as we walked around one corner  “Oh my God, they have an entire wall of Sergio de Grassi boots!” Will, myself and Jennie all bought some really cool britches (well mine were a present from Will. Oh how I get spoiled).

The horses all came out a whole bunch fresher for their morning graze today. I think they, like us, were ready to do something other than eat or sleep. Tiana and Jennie went out for a hack together and Will and I hopped on his two. Now I am not usually one to love the hour-long walk hack, however the gift of my groovy new britches meant there was no stopping me. Well, that and the chance to hop on Ernie, my hacking buddy.

The trails around the barn we are staying at are lovely, but they seem to give more clearance and right of way to cyclists than they do horses and we were grateful our two are used to dogs and machinery being driven around. When we got back from our walk, Will took each of them for a short trot and canter on each rein just to see how they felt and let their bodies loosen up a little.

Other than that there isn’t a whole bunch to report. I have been terrible about taking photos and promise to attach my camera to myself tomorrow. Kelly and I are still waging ‘War of the Blogs.’ We had a good laugh over the fact that that she was an English History major and I, well, I was not, so I have to have an editor. It’s all jokes though.

Will’s fantastic owner (Jennifer Mosing ) has rented him a little hatchback car and we all five squeeze in for any travel—God only knows what would have happened had we not all been in the same hotel. It’s “Chauffer Will” at the moment, and he is doing a fabulous job of couriering everyone from hotel to barn to supermarket to hotel to barn and back again.

Tomorrow will no doubt involve another trip to the tack store, some light flat work and for me another run, and lots of photos being taken I promise. As they say here in Germany, Chuuze!! (Not sure of the German spelling but it means, Bye!)

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