Felix would do just about anything for a slice, or four, of bread. Eight, Katie is no longer tall enough to reach Felix’s head when he is disinclined to acquiesce to her requests. Nine, Katie and Felix disagreed on the subject of bridles. Ten, Katie lost. Needless to say, a bit of a rally and a rethink was needed. After picking the brains of my previous employer, a saddler and horse breeder, neighbours and my mum, a loose plan to proceed was formed. It had been suggested to me to disassemble the bridle and introduce it to Felix one bit at a time; beginning with the throatlash, then introducing the brow band and cheek pieces etc. This seemed like a fairly sensible idea. Therefore I cheerfully and obediently trotted off to the barn to collect the very shiny in-hand bridle, only to find that those pretty little rosettes were immoveable and thus I wasn’t going to be able to disassemble anything. With much wiggling I was able to take the noseband out, and remove the bit, but that was about it. Needless to say it didn’t help. Then it rained solid for a week, we had Christmas, more rain, and finally several weeks later the weather was reasonable enough to resume. Now, of course, Felix had had a nice long stint of do-nothing in his paddock, and was no closer to getting his bridle on. This didn’t help either. Luckily for me, visitors dictated that the barn and sleep-out needed to be cleaned out, to make room for cars, air beds, and the garden furniture if the weather got worse. It was during this thoroughly dusty cleanout that Mum decided it would be a good idea to do the horse-float while we were at it, and basically make the whole mess a job lot for one tip-run. We discovered three interesting things in cleaning the horse float out: First and foremost, a dead mouse. This was pretty grotty, and we took that as a sign to throw away any horse food still hanging about. We found a hole in the floor of the horse float, our horse float being very old and floored with wood, and Racing stripes on the refurbished float could help. apparently having a leak in the ceiling. This discovery put to rest any ideas about teaching Felix to float. Dad and I will now be spending the summer stripping the float back to the frame and re-panelling, re-flooring, and re-painting it. I want to paint racing stripes on it, but Mum says I don’t need the encouragement. We discovered Toby’s old bridle, which could be disassembled. Since Toby is a 16.3hh Thoroughbred and Felix is a 14hh Cob-cross the bridle was, naturally, much too big. However, removing the drop-noseband and shortening the cheek pieces right up to the last hole made it a reasonable practice bridle. And with any luck, the plain black leather would be less fussy to Felix than a shiny in-hand bridle.