Ben

When we moved into our present house, which was back in 1976, we found we did not have sole occupation. Ben already lived there. Actually, Ben didn’t say a lot and by and large he preferred to be outside. We were lucky for we had moved into a house which was a bit of a wreck, but which had about three and a bit acres of ‘outside’ along with a tumbledown barn and some old pigsties. Ben stayed in the barn if it was lousy weather, but some will remember that 1976 was the drought in Britain. There wasn’t a lot of lousy weather.

We worried a bit about Ben and wondered if he might have friends – possibly whisky drinking friends. We found the evidence in the store room that linked pigsty to pigsty.

It was sometime before we met Ben’s friend and it turned out to be a lady. She was called Sue and she was a bright and chatty lady. I came across her with Ben, in the tumbledown barn and she was holding the bottle of whisky.

But now all of the mystery fell into place and we felt no need to worry about sharing our home with Ben. Well, to be honest we never had worried much for Ben had never bothered us. And here is Ben.

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Aha, Ben is a horse – a friendly old boy he was too. Sue was human for she was Ben’s owner and the bottle (which said whisky) contained hoof ointment for Ben.

Ben stayed with us for a couple of years until Sue’s husband, John, who was in the RAF, was posted elsewhere. When he retired from the forces, they returned to this area but found a home for Ben right next to their house.

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