Speaking of frosty mornings, the water troughs for the horses and other animals get completely covered with a thick layer of ice. There I am, in the early morning hours (well, not TOO early), breaking the ice so the horses can drink. This usually involves making my way carefully to the paddocks. Ice sits heavily on the grass, so you need to be careful not to slip.

If it’s been raining, then you have to run the gauntlet of not getting your boots stuck in some watery, muddy hole. Horses can churn up the entrance to a paddock and the horse track is basically one big mud bath. Never thought I’d say this but bring on the North Westerlies – because they dry the ground fast.

I need to lay my hands on some tennis balls. Apparently, if you put one in the water trough, it stops the trough from freezing over – basically, because the horses bob it around and because the ball constantly moves around, making it impossible for ice to form.

A usual early morning chore: cracking the ice that covers the water troughs.

A layer of ice covers a water trough.