Tales from the Finchbottom Vale – (33) Love at a Gallop (Part 05)
The pattern of training continued for another week and after the 15th day with him she announced to Chris.
“I think he’s ready to be ridden again”
“Excellent” Chris said “then you’ll be ready to take on Inky”
“Yes” she agreed “Anytime now”
“Well why don’t you come over to Nettlefield with me next week to pick him up”
“I’d love to” Hazel said
“Good, next Thursday afternoon then”
Almost at that exact moment back in the yard at Copper Beach Farm Lynne Radcliffe and Charlotte Clode were discussing what to get Hazel for her upcoming birthday which was only two days away.
“What do you get for the girl who has nothing?” Lynne asked in exasperation
“It should be so easy” Charlotte said
“I know but it’s not is it?”
“Then we’re just going to have to ask her outright” Charlotte responded
“I suppose so but there’s no surprise that way” Lynne said resignedly.
They were still in the yard discussing it when Hazel returned to the yard and she was smiling to herself when she heard Lynne call to her
“What are you two up to?”
“Nothing” Charlotte said innocently
“We were just wondering what you would like for your upcoming birthday”
“Nothing” Hazel said
“That’s not an option” Lynne stated
“I mean it” Hazel said “You don’t need to get me anything”
“Nonsense” Lynne countered “We want to, so what would you like more than anything in the world?”
Hazel thought for a moment and smiled and then replied
“A cut, wash and blow dry”
“Is that all?” Lynne asked
“Is that all? That would be absolute heaven” Hazel retorted and grinned
“Ok then” Lynne said “I suppose that’s settled”
But to herself she added
“Well I think we can do slightly better than that though”
It was Hazel’s birthday two days later and the day began the same as any other with mucking out the stables with the other girls but when she returned to her rooms at 9 o’clock and opened the door she was met with a chorus of “Happy Birthday”.
Lynne, Charlotte and Anthony were sitting at her dining table
They bought her a gift voucher for Mazzone’s Hairdressers in Mornington which she was thrilled with but they also gave her a Spa day, so the three girls could go to the Dancingdean Spa Hotel together.
There were also a pile of birthday cards and a bouquet of flowers from Chris Harper.
She wasted no time in cashing in her voucher at Mazzone’s hairdressers in Mornington to sort out her thick, unruly bright orange hair, and afterwards she felt wonderful and it was every bit as good as she was expecting it to be.
After close to three years after splitting with her husband she had resigned herself to the fact that she would never see or hear from him again, and she was perfectly happy about that, so nobody was more surprised than she was when Charlotte called her over to the office after she returned from Mornington.
“Hazel! Phone call”
“For me?” she called back
“Hello?” she said
“Hello Haze” a voice responded
It was quite a shock for her to hear Bobs voice after all the time that had passed.
“How did you get this number?” she snapped
“comme ci comme ça” he retorted
“What do you want Bob?”
“Oh don’t be like that babe” he said
“Don’t you dare babe me you bastard”
“Alright calm down” he said and she hung up but a minute later the phone rang again.