#1 here. As promised, today is the day that I reveal what the approaching "storm" consists of. Fear not, it is all good stuff! And it is a project that all three horses are heavily involved in.
As you know, #1 does a lot of work with the heavy horse world in Japan. From September 12 to 18 will take place the Route du Poisson (Fish Run), the biggest heavy horse event in Europe. Thanks to contacts that I made whilst in Tokyo last summer, the heavy horse association I work with in Japan (Japan Horse Logging Association) has received funding from the JRA (Japan Racing Association) to send a small team to take part, as invited guests, in a couple of the events. A full team requires 20 horses and at least seven or eight drivers, which is not a possibility for Japan at the moment. But they will take part in the horse logging special competition, on September 14, and will also drive the last stage of the road race, which will take place in Paris on September 18. As an aside, they will also reproduce Japan's largest and most famous heavy horse festival, Chagu Chagu Umakko, in Amiens on September 17, and on the Champs Elysées in Paris on September 18. The latter is where the Poupounette horses come in as all three of them will take part in the festival.
The Big V was slated to do the logging special competition, but he has had an adverse reaction to one of the needed booster shots and has a swollen neck, just where the work collar would go. We have therefore made the decision to replace him with another horse, belonging to a friend of Ms. C's. But he will be able to take part in the festival parade.
Those of you who have been following us for a long time may remember that we staged a mini version of this same festival in the summer of 2015 and Miss Violette took part. She was a real star and absolutely loved it! Here are some photos from back then:
It will be the first time, however, for the Big V and Heloise. So, Ms. C has been working to get them used to the sound of the bells that decorate the amazing costumes that are worn by the horses.
The Big V, having done many events outside, is pretty cool about it all:
But Miss Heloise is much younger and has little experience of being out and about, so we have been working with her a lot more:
The first batch of Japanese for the event arrive tomorrow, and others will continue to trickle in over the following days. There will be some 25 people in all coming over. Starting tomorrow, and until September 19, I am going to be spending virtually all of my time with them as they travel, with the horses, to different locations, culminating in Paris on the 18th. There will be no time to blog, unfortunately. I will prepare a few more posts through the weekend, but there won't be any next week. For those on Facebook, there will be the occasional photo. The horses will tell you all about it once it's over. Please cross all paws and fingers that everything will go smoothly and the weather will be clement. Mr. G will be on duty at Poupounette Central!