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News from Vicki

14 May 2008

So Bla and I have arrived in Europe...

A good flight.  Actually fairly direct, which is unusual for a cargo flight.  We only stopped twice, at Hong Kong to pick up more cargo, after which the plane was packed(!) and Dubai to refuel.  Bla and Pro Ratina travelled together on a pallet, and Vivant travelled on his own.  Bla and Rose were very happy, and soon became besties.  Chris, Hillary and I had a pretty uneventful flight, as horses were great, eating and drinking, and the pilots were very happy for us to be with horses at any time.

We got to Amsterdam at about 2 a.m., and luckily horses were able to go into quarantine stables, while we hung around in the animal quarantine canteen until they were vetted, and the truck to pick us up that didn't appear til 12.30!  5 hours onto Gilbert Boeckmann's whose place is stunning, and Bla got in a paddock for half an hour, and got to have a great romp and many rolls before we were picked up to go to our final destination at Stal Rijkens, about 2 hours away near Hamburg.  3 days on, and she is happily settled in her stable, and goes in a paddock during the day, and shortly I will have my first ride on her, as she seems sufficiently recovered from the flight, and was quite looky and spooky when I put her in the paddock this morning.  In the meantime I am riding a couple of hot mares for Tjeert, right up my alley, and hopefully should be able to show them as well in the next few weeks.

It was good to catch up with Adam Mellers at Gilbert's, and Phil Lever, and great to hear that Laurie had got his M.E.S. that day at Mannheim.  Yesterday I went to a local show with Tjeert to see some of his horses compete, and caught up with Rolf Goran Bengstton and Soren von Ronne, whom I only see every couple of years when I make it back to Europe.  They live up in this area, so it's a very strong jumping area, with zillions of horses everywhere.  No wonder the Germans (okay Rolf is Swedish) are so good at the sport.

Further updates after Bla's first few rides.  Hopefully she is not too feral, but I am expecting her to be totally out of her tree ...

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