Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Gene pool

There are many qualities my children possess, but I do not know where they come from.

Not from me, I answer, when Tiger flies snarling at Shark's head with fangs and claws outstretched. That particular combination of genes for beautiful and deadly comes direct from Dig's side. I reckon granny on Dig's side, with that nose and chin combination. She looked Viking to me. She didn't show a temper, or a sword, nor evidence of a blood feud down the WI, but don't be deceived. In these Northumberland villages, it all looks tweedy but there's family honour and vengeance underneath.

Squirrel's hoarding gene I might admit to, because you never know when that sticky tape will come in handy. It is so old the adhesion has bonded together and made an inseparable brown goo, but that might be just what is needed one day when mending something. Like that chair I'm not throwing out.

Shark with the water thing I might see as well, but only just. My father built a sailing boat and then borrowed a book from the library to see how it would work when it hit the water. He only ended up in hospital once from that endeavour.

But this particular gene of Tiger's - affection for anything horse shaped - is nothing to do with me whatsoever. Dig claims the horse gene isn't him either. But I have my suspicions about that because there's more than a mysterious touch of the Welsh about Dig and no-one knows where Owen Glendower got to and I bet he had a horse. So there's a mystery for Tiger to sort out in later life.

I know it's not me because my family are all working class folks, and the only horse we grew up with was the sight of Shipo's brewery horse pulling the cart round Nottingham backstreets. Then, if you can call it a horse education, all us town girls, scrubbed and brushed and picked for grammar school, had to endure an autumn term of reading Black Beauty, and that was torture. I can still recall the groans and face pulling when that tombstone of text fell out the book cupboard. And that sums up my entire history of horse knowledge. In fact these huge and scary animals are as strange and alien to me as a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Possibly slightly more scary, thanks to that nose blowing thing. But like many other fears and natural avoidances, I have had to conquer and overcome them, or as much as I can, in order to negotiate Tiger to her dream. On a horse.

Well here is Tiger. On a horse.

This is the start of her autumn riding lessons with a new stables. I had to dutifully promise these thanks to her previous summer horse adventure week ending up as a failure in a field. I can truly say I am very proud of her. Even if she has a family line that possibly includes Owen Glendower.


Mud in the City said...

I have to admit to that horse gene as well and it is still going strong! Did make for easy B'day pressies though - a hoof pick and a dandy brush and I was happy!

P.S. There's an award over at my place for you!

Grit said...

this is very true mud, and i hadn't thought of this pov, so thank you for that! i feel forearmed come naming day, christmas & b'day!

thank you very much for an award, i shall come over immediately!

Michelle said...

For fiscal reasons we are still maintaining that horses are spawned from the devil and will not hear otherwise.

Joanna said...

I think I mutated the horse gene when I was born as no-one else in my family had it, but my daughter has certainly inherited it in a very big way!

Grit said...

hi michelle ... i try and drink half a bottle of gin before putting my hand in my purse. then everything seems hilarious.

hi joanna! do you have to read all the pony stories too? i read one out loud yesterday. all 100 pages. it was something close to torture, but better than the magic kitten.