First of all, I must apologize to those of you who have been experiencing technical difficulties viewing this blog over the past several weeks.  The problem has been partly due to my having  pasted copyrighted cartoons into my posts; yesterday I put photos up that were too big, but now I have been duly corrected – and reminded that computers are a lot like horses. It’s usually the rider’s fault. Please be in touch with comments at the bottom of posts if you are having any problem with reading the blog. Now, onto more exciting things!

Pardon me for being biased (I am inevitably infected by the hype I have been breathing into my now-daily WDM press releases) but this WDM is going to be a big, big deal and a whole lot of fun. I’m sure of that. Being there for the arrival of the European horses on Sunday was the first light bulb moment I had of what a big deal having all these wonder horses and riders in one place, and in such intimate surroundings. I’m not just talking about the Euro horses, either. I’ll get to see Ashley’s new horse, plus some of my faves – like Pierre and Lucky Tiger who came in the ring today looking as fit as the eventers Pierre is exposed to through wife Sam (Taylor). I’m going to commit my usual undiplomatic prediction of results and say it’s going to be a show down between Steffen and Charlotte. Here’s another prediction: the top two placed horses and riders from tomorrow’s 3 star GP will get invited into the five star. I’d be willing to bet an umbrella drink or three that Heather Blitz and Paragon – who is looking very grown up since Guadalajara, where I last saw him – are going to not only be invited into the WDM but that they just might give the big dogs a run for their money.

Just in case you don’t believe I’m really in Welly world but reporting on all this couch potato style from home, here are a couple of photos that should persuade you:

Valegro arriving at Jim Brandon - is that not the cutest bit of awesome horse flesh you ever saw?









And here’s a photo of Minna and Deinhardt getting ready to school in the ring this afternoon (I think we could call this WDM “Helmet Wars”. There is definitely a helmet faction and a this-is-an-fei-event-so-I-don’t-have-to faction):

And finally, here’s a picture of Joni Lynn Peters and Travolta getting high submission and presentation marks at the three star jog today:

Of course it’s not all DQs and nothing else. Welly World is about so much more than that.  Here are a couple of pics that show what extra-curricular activities I’ve been up to:

Hangin' with the Canadian Paras who Kicked Canuck Butt at the CPEDI last weekend.

Seeing the Stanley Cup in the "flesh" at Sunday Polo (my first real polo game, believe it or not).











And this final little snap shot taken with my new iphone (can someone please send me n0-right-click devices for Dummies?) of me and my partner in not-quite-crime Jenn Ward prowling around her Polo Island hood looking for – and finding – illicit activity (more on that next week, much more). That’s kool-aid in the glasses, of course.

Stay tuned for much more on the WDM over the next few days. If you are stuck in the cold, dark north and wishing you could lighten the drear with a little top notch piaffe and passage observation, you can watch live streaming of the WDM on either IPC’s website  or USEF Network. And you can certainly count on some blow-by-blow commentary right here on this blog.

If the title of today’s post takes you back to the nostalgia of Cat Stevens in the 70’s, here is something that I didn’t steal to help transport you back in time.