15 September 2014
Frauke Jürgensen & Button-Biting Benjamin & Overhall Mary May
My name is Frauke Jürgensen. I was born in Germany, grew up in Canada, and came to live in Scotland in 2007, where I work as a Lecturer in Music at the University of Aberdeen. Apart from pursuing musicological research and wrestling undergraduates, I perform as a singer, dancer, and organist.
I began riding lessons when I was 9, under the tutelage of an Austrian dressage rider. This means that I sit very straight, but can get very worried when I'm in a big open field, with no fences, on a horse with acute brakes failure! I am becoming gradually inured to such situations with increased exposure, thankfully.
Button-Biting Benjamin, or Benji to his friends, is a bright-bay 14.1 gelding with an unfortunate tendency to be wider than he is tall. We think he may be about 12 years old, although his passport claims that he's 14 (his past appears to be a bit chequered). Benji has a small white triangle on his nose, and likes anything that he can eat. He thinks that he can eat buttons.
Benji came to me in 2008. We
tried to do dressage, because that's what I like to do, and got as far as a
decent Novice score before he decided to pack it in. Attempts at teaching
him to jump have led to various A&E visits, so we're a bit cautious in that
respect. However, he seems to have a knack for trotting and cantering for
long distances without tiring, so Endurance is the discipline for him!
Benji and I have participated in Pleasure Rides since 2009. At our first ride, we took the “Pleasure” bit quite literally, until I realised that we'd gone only 1/4 of the route, but in 1/2 the allotted time! Since then, we've wised up a bit: in 2012, Benji and I were the Novice combination for the Home International Scottish team, and that same summer, we completed our Bronze Thistle and managed to win several trophies. In 2013, we completed our first STQ, with Gold. Benji is a barefoot pony, so can usually be seen sporting a pair of bright red Renegades. I hope we can stomp our way around the rest of the Silver Thistle soon!
Overhall Mary May is a recent addition to my field. She has taken over dressage duties, and may be venturing out on some Pleasure Rides later on. Her full brother is Benji's best friend from his old yard, with whom Benji has done many an Endurance ride, so she should take to it well!