I’m thinking of opening up a business on the property – Oxford Mud Baths. With all the rain recently, the paddocks are a quagmire and the horses look like ghost horses. Despite my efforts at grooming them, they seem to love going straight back out and having a good old roll in the mud. Next morning, I find it literally caked on. I should invent a vacuum cleaner for horses – suck that mud right out of their coats. I know that during summer, horses often coat themselves in mud because it acts as a repellent to flies and insects. And in winter, a layer of caked-on mud helps to keep horses warm.

I’m not overly worried about how they look (although I’m sure some toffee-nosed horsey types will scoff because my horses aren’t scrupulously clean) because let’s face it – in the wild, horses roll in mud and sand because they like to. It’s fun and helps them have a good old back scratch. So rather than distress myself, I chuckle when I see my ghost horses and try to groom them as much as I can. But they are always one step ahead of me.

With so much mud around, I’m sure I could offer weekend specials for tourists – a one hour mud spa, complete with equine company!

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