Hacking: Weapons of mass disruption

“We worried for decades about WMDs – Weapons of Mass Destruction. Now it is time to worry about a new kind of WMDs – Weapons of Mass Disruption,” John Mariotti

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To me, a horse-rider, hacking is a pleasant leisure activity.


Me on Poppy, Daria on Alfie – Perryman’s Lane


That’s my hacking. It’s NOT receiving a text from an acquaintance this morning saying, ‘Caroline someone stole my wallet & accessed my current account last night. Please help.’

WAS this a hack, was this genuine? I honestly don’t know.

I’ve sinced received another text saying ‘Got sorted Caroline – panic over’

And I STILL won’t respond.

That’s what hacking does. It destroys trust.

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It destroys trust at the time and makes people more wary in the future too.  This might have been a genuine plea for help. I have yet to find out.

Of course, my first inclination was to reply to the text asking, ‘Is this for real?’ If I’d done that then ‘the hacker’ would know that he or she had accessed a live account.

What I DID do was send a private message on Facebook (Now here’s me thinking, how private is THAT? See what I mean?)

I also phoned the number from a public call box so as not to involve my landline. (Blimey! – minimum charge 60p – no wonder everyone uses a mobile phone!) The call went to answer-phone and then was cut off.

Yep – disruption. Concern. Worry. Time wasted. Emotional energy expended. 70p spent – the callbox didn’t give change. Minor row with husband who believes I’m too naive.

So…the hacker, if hacker it was, wins. Maybe no financial gain, maybe nothing other than the satisfaction of disrupting my life for a few hours.

Thank you for nothing, hacker.

I think I’ll stick to the horses.



Some Welsh stuff

Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Sant hapus…and a happy St. David’s Day too.


I haven’t a single ounce of Welsh blood in my veins, but hey, I have daffodils in the garden and leeks in the fridge…

I have some lovely Welsh friends AND when I was a young thing I used to support London Welsh rugby club (Don’t tell the Saints, Northampton people!) Why? Because I was in love with T.G.R. Davies. Let me embarrass myself by finding a picture of my heart-throb…the best R winger in the ever ever, in my not-very-knowledgeable opinion. Certainly the best moustache.

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AND, for Pete’s 60th birthday, we’re staying in the Pen-Y-Gwryd Hotel and doing the Snowdon Horseshoe.

AND, dear Wales, you have the BEST national anthem.


“When you can’t figure out what to do, it’s time for a nap.”

…aah, Mason Cooley. A man after my own heart on a Sunday. Time for a nap? Yes!

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In all honesty, there’s plenty I could be doing. I won’t even begin to list pending chores – otherwise… no time for snoozing.

So here I go…

The Siesta 1876 by John Frederick Lewis 1805-1876

The Siesta by John Frederick Lewis

I look much like this when I’m having a nap. Well, I have my eyes closed, at least.

Charles. M. Schulz had it about right too:

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon.”


Nap Time by Terri Windling

Something in the air…


Sunshine, was it? A little warmth. A lack of rain.

And then, that phrase, something in the air, made me think of Thunderclap Newman.

Goodness me, 1969.

Described as ‘vintage pop’ in its YouTube posting. (They don’t make them like that anymore, grandma.)

Happy Saturday, people!

The train is a small world…

…moving through a larger world.

I love this, Elisha Cooper, and I love being on a train, more than any other sort of transport.

So does Anna Funder. “I like trains. I like their rhythm, and I like the freedom of being suspended between two places, all anxieties of purpose taken care of: for this moment I know where I am going.”

Today, I’m taking the train to London. And now I’m laughing. That phrase sounds as though…

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Yes, that should fit in my handbag…

Taking the train to London. Maybe. What with landslides and trees down on the lines and delays because of flooding, who knows?

There are trains that travel underwater, aren’t there?


Oh yes.

And here’s what London’s going to be like when (if) I get there.

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or even…

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I feel like an explorer setting out on an expedition. (Not counting the proximity of Starbucks.)

It’s exciting.

Captain Oates-like, ‘I am just going outside and may be some time.’

Smiling is infectious

You can catch it like the flu.
Someone smiled at me today,
And I started smiling too.

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Today is “The Whole World’s Smiling Day!”

I just made that up.


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I’m going to be smiling – and I’m going to send people smiles too.

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I reckon it’s a meaningful way to spend a windy rainy day.

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And this is for me and for you.


Keep smiling!

Horse massage – good for the fingernails

A massage message…


Though not actually raining this morning, the ground was so sodden and muddy that my normal long hack on the forest didn’t happen. Trotting, cantering and galloping banned until it dries up. It’s too slippery, too dangerous.

Instead, I decided to spend time pampering my horses.  I don’t usually – just fling on the tack and ride,  my theory being that caked-on mud acts as a protective barrier, not to mention insulation. This could be a theory created to justify laziness. Who knows?

Today, a massage for Poppy, then…


(Yes, I know this is a picture of Alfie but he’s less in need of a massage with his dark colouring and sturdy legs)

Poppy loved it. She stood in the sunshine with her head lowered and her eyes closed. Well, after I’d hosed down her legs with ice cold water, that is!

A leg massage times four. Winter hoof cream rubbed on lovingly – a barrier cream containing keratin, hence my super strong fingernails. Vaseline massaged in from hoof to knee, to stop the mud from sticking – that’s the theory, anyway.

It was strangely relaxing for me too. The double whammy value of massage. Poppy and I have been at odds lately – she picking up on my stress and not being that sympathetic and helpful, so we end up resisting each other instead of being as one. The massage made all the difference to our synergy.

Next week, yoga!


On slowing down

Saturday. A day for slowing down.

“Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace.”

Thank you, May Sarton. Weather for gardening today, I hope, or at the very least, spending time outdoors so that the chickens can potter around while I’m on fox watch.


The horses won’t mind slowing down. They won’t expect it, these creatures always told to ‘Walk on. Trot, trot. Canter! Giddy up! Hup, hup, hup. Go faster. Go faster.’

Dozy Alfie

Alfie slowing down

(If Alfie slowed down any more, he’d be going backwards. Except when he bolts.)

My brain’s definitely slowing down, despite the fact I have tons of work to do.


Here’s my theory: Slower brain = more efficiency = more work.

Today my brain’s like Alfie. Almost going backwards. Unless it bolts.



Horse Spirit – To ride a horse is to ride the sky

I would know I was in a REALLY bad way if a ride on a horse didn’t make me feel better. (Possibly not including the times I get chucked off, but even then…) Today was no exception. A gallop across the forest on Alfie to banish the wobbly thoughts and cobwebs. Horse spirit at work.


“The essential joy of being with horses is that it brings us in contact with the rare elements of grace, beauty, spirit, and fire. ” ~Sharon Ralls Lemon

Today, I received a lovely and unexpected gift from my dear friend Rusty, from Mumbai, presently in the States. He was delighted to have shopped for it himself. (His wheelchair can go more places in America, I imagine!)

Here it is (the photo doesn’t AT ALL do it justice – not the way I take photos, anyway!)


It’s a Horse Spirit, carved in Dolomite stone, from Peru.

A card tells me, “The Horse Spirit brings practicality, speed, strength and grace. Horses have stamina, they are passionate, independent and ready for action. Your Spirit Horse can help you to meet challenges, take risks, make choices and move forward while remaining solidly grounded.”

How perfect is that? Exactly what I need at the moment. No, not just at the moment. Always.


Horses, dogs…and chickens.

Thank you, Rusty.

I shall cherish my  Horse Spirit.


Splashing in puddles

I LOVE splashing in puddles.


I have the mentality of a four-year old in this department of my brain. Maybe others too, but we won’t go there, eh?

Splashing in puddles as exemplified by Sigur Rós, in their song Hoppipolla.

This is ME!

I love all that splashing in my wellies and on my horses.

The horses are not so keen – especially not Alfie. ‘The puddle could be twenty feet deep for all you know,’ he tells me.

This is Alfie.

I love splashing in puddles in my car too, at high speed. Though I promise you, I NEVER do it when there are pedestrians about.