Tuesday June 30th and it was only a few hours ride to my final destination at Pat Larsen's stables in Crown Point. The photo below was taken by journalist Deborah Laverty, who interviewed me en route.
Lady was settled into a paddock while I made a trip back to Port Huron to fetch the rest of my baggage. Many many thanks to Pam Vanaman for so generously driving me all the way there and back in her car!
Pat takes me for a delicious frozen yoghurt before I catch the coach to Canada..
As I still had a few days before my flight home the following week, I arranged to visit Hilary Tolhurst, an old friend who emigrated over thirty years ago from Wales to Canada. Starting with a colt and a filly she imported from Wales, she has built up the well respected Cwmfelen stud of quality Welsh cobs near Kemble, Ontario.
An interesting trip was to the Kemble Women's Institute Lookout, with its memorial dedicated to what amazingly transpires to be the oldest active women's institute in the world!! I was astonished to find that although I have always regarded the 'jam and jerusalem' brigade as quintessentially English, the first institute was in fact founded at Stoney Creek, Ontario in 1897, followed closely by the Kemble Women's Institute in the same year - it was the third to be formed. It was not until eighteen years later that the first WI was set up in Britain - and that was in North Wales!
I was also delighted to meet up with David Wilding-Davies, a former member of the Canadian eventing team who lost his farm in Zimbabwe to Mugabe. but then founded Ashanti Coffee , importing and selling African coffee. We met up at his café in Collingwood, Ontario..
Our connection is that he is a g-g-grandson of John Morgan Davies who built the house where I live in Wales today and his g-grandfather was born here. see www.ffrwdfal.co.uk His grandfather Theron Wilding-Davies started the annual 2-day Fayre Oaks Sale so renowned among Welsh pony enthusiasts, and accountant cousin Paul was at one time treasurer of the Welsh Pony and Cob society.