29 december 2020
What a year this has been!
A year in which our main activity has been keeping six horses alive in a way that corresponds best with their nature and needs. Horses are nomadic herd animals with strong family bonds. They migrate while looking for food that consists of a great variety of different plants, grasses, herbs, shrubs, mosses and even bark. They walk and they eat.
We cannot provide our horses with the freedom of a true nomadic life. But here in Greece we can move them from olive grove to olive grove in different areas, what makes for a large variety of plants to eat. And we can make grazing walks with them. This year we’ve been laying the basis of a structure in which we will eventually have access to sufficient olive groves for the whole year. We have reached a stage in which farmers come to ask us to bring the horses to their fields, also some who were doubtful in the beginning. I am very proud of this achievement.
I love being with the horses, taking them out on walks, taking care of them, learning from them. I love the physical work outside in the fields, enjoying the silence and space of this beautiful country. I love the prospect of sharing this wonderful herd with others next year when Greece will be able to receive guests again.
This year has not been easy, far from it. There have been setbacks. Like the loss of Kyran early this spring. I have not yet been able to look at pictures of him, the pain is too raw. In summer the work was hard, the heat overwhelming. We have known exhaustion and despair. Like last week, when our carefully arranged supply of hay for the whole winter period turned out to be sold. Where do you find hay in December? How do you get six horses through the winter without hay?
It has been wonderful to experience how resilient we are. We just bounce back every time, finding new inspiration and energy. This year has also taught me to ask for help. There’s no need to feel ashamed when you ask for help. And most people are very willing to help.
My biggest challenge has been handling the fear and worries. Not for me, but for the well being of the horses. Six of these huge creatures and so many things that can go wrong. I have spent many nightly hours watching the fear, feeling it. I have learned to be with it without letting it influence my decisions. I made a mantra of the following sentence: ‘I trust that everything we need for ourselves and for our animals will come to us in ease and abundance, at exactly the right time.’ I hold this in my mind and heart when I go to sleep and I set it as an intention for the day in the morning. And somehow everything has fallen into place, problems got solved, and there have been the most beautiful synchronicities reaching solutions to us when we didn’t expect them.
So it is a year to be grateful for. And we are. We feel very blessed that we have been able to be here in this strange time in history and do what we love. I have never felt so vibrant and alive. And I look forward to 2021, in which we will continue our exciting adventure with our animal family in this most beautiful place on earth.
A blessed and happy new year to you all