I feel that the saddle needs a name. Currently I call it ‘the saddle’ or ‘my saddle’.
Firstly I thought it should be called “Miss Piggy” because I think the seat and pommels are made from pigskin. But as the saddle has darkened it somehow doesn’t fit anymore.
Since it’s made on a Somerset tree, I think I should call it ‘Somerset’. Or, it came from somewhere west of Condobolin – but that’s a bit of a mouthful. So until I think of a better name, it is Somerset.
The gentle moisturising and sponging is continuing, but I think I’ll only get the little flaps straightened out next year. I really want to save them and I’ll have to do it slowly and carefully.
In the meantime I’m preparing it for storage. I noticed that since I’ve removed all the flock and the panels (Linda Fleming informs me that it was wool roving, not horsehair in the panels, which is slightly less romantic) Somerset doesn’t sit on the purple saddle stand properly – all the weight goes through the gullet. That will not do.
I needed to pad up the other two bars somehow. I have silk cushions I brought back from Thailand. Two, safety pinned and knotted together under the central bar make pretty good padding. Really I should have found an old pillow or something, but this saves me packing the cushions up. And Somerset deserves some luxury after all these years of deprivation.
On top of my gold-striped maroon thai silk cushions goes a cheap lime green IKEA throw, and Somerset nestles nicely on top.
She looks so different to the saddle that arrived in the post.
I do hope that Wendy can re-use the safe, pommels, offside purse lid and both little flaps. Ideally the remaining leather from the seat can be reworked into the offside purse pouch too. And I also hope that she can rebalance the saddle so that it doesn’t place so much weight on the loins, which these old saddles did – because I do want to ride Somerset.
I have gingerly hovered over the top of her and I think she’ll fit me to a T. She won’t be for everyday riding, but for special occasions like displays and shows. I’ll have to get something newer and more rugged for bashing about in. One day……….