He's here!! Sig arrived safely today and needless to say we were thrilled to see each other.
Please forgive the lack of updates and the lack of depth in this one. He hauled 12+ hours from Kentucky to New York... and then the inbound flight to JFK got grounded and threw the whole timeline off. He sat in NY for three or four extra days, finally flew out on Saturday afternoon, and landed in Belgium early on Sunday morning. Because his flight was delayed, he missed the shared lorry out of Belgium. My options as of yesterday morning were: make him wait at the airport for another five days or more, or pay absurd amount of money for a dedicated lorry.
I coughed up the cash. With him having not traveled before and alone in Liege, it seemed like the right thing to do. I feel like I was asking a lot of him already, and another five days of waiting would possibly put him at risk and would definitely drive me to lunacy. So now if I wasn't before, I am super poor now.
Also, I'm not even sure how he got here. I called the company back yesterday and asked for the dedicated lorry. Was told delivery would be Monday night. Seemed reasonable. Except I got a call at noon today, while I was in the office, saying that he had arrived to the yard 30 minutes ago and did I know? NO! Somehow he got on a truck straightaway, and eventually ended up in Newmarket, then the racehorse people dropped him off? No one knows. Which is super comforting? Whatever. He's here.
Good news is he is in great weight and was super calm and professional when he got to the yard. He had some downtime in his box and then I took him out for a handwalk/graze for an hour or two. He was foot perfect the entire time. Afterward, he got turned out in the yard's bad-weather turnout pen so he could get a roll in and maybe a buck or two. He rolled, trotted about five feet...and that's about it. No bucks to give, lol. He got a nice bath and an EXTREMELY thorough grooming (with nearly two months of grime on him ...he enjoyed the currying!), then tucked in for the night. Eating and drinking well so far. Fingers crossed he continues to settle well and handles the transition smoothly. I don't know that I'll truly feel better for another week or two until he's in the routine and still feeling good.
He'll get a couple days to rest, new shoes, and then eased back into work. I haven't slept properly in five days so...I'm going to bed.
Gosh, I was riding Gypsum at a yard in Kent, two days after we landed in Amsterdam. It was something to do while we waited for our lift to Durham. She was such a trooper. I miss her so much. That connection. It's so special. I totally understand why you brought him here instead of buying/loaning another one. Rebuilding that relationship is hard. But it's not like I have a choice now.
Gypsum also took extreme offense at many things my two UK-bred horses have not... the oddness of yard routines here as compared to the US, 24/7 turnout, herds, horizontal rain, mud, midges, cleg flies... And I never did figure out why keeping weight on her here, especially in the winter, was such a ball-ache, much harder than it had ever been in the States It's like there was something in the grass and hay/haylage that the US has (though the US doesn't use haylage), and the UK doesn't, and whatever that was, she needed it.
But you're in the south, which is milder than the Northeast/Scotland -- less horizontal rain -- and he seems like an adaptable horse. I hope he settles in quickly.
Oh he looks great! What a trooper. The only issue I had moving my horse to the UK was she didn't understand walking on the left hand side of the road. Hacking was.....interesting. Fine off road though.