The time seems to have passed so quickly since my last post but I have neglected my writing for long enough. A lot of things have been happening here at Quinta do Brejo and beyond.
I had a very nice week in England – giving my second clinic at Birtle Riding Centre near Manchester and then teaching some private lessons around the North West of the country. I’m looking forward to returning there in a couple of months to see how everyone is progressing.
Back over in Portugal I’ve been busy with guests of both the two legged and four legged kind. Most recently a beautiful new friend has come from Quinta da Encosta to stay with us for a while – a 3 year old horse named Esquivo da Encosta. He’ll be with us for a period of training before moving to his new owner in Sweden. Esquivo moves wonderfully and is a very tall and handsome horse.
We have also been scouting out some hacking routes for clients who come to stay here. And my goodness the scenery around the farm is beautiful. On horseback you can wind your way through the woodlands and over the hills surrounding Quinta do Brejo, eventually looking out on the small villages around Malveira and toward the ocean. When it’s clear you can see as far as Sintra. To smell the wild herbs and eucalyptus trees; hear the gentle song of church bells and ride through villages alive with the daily chores of laundry, bread baking and the gossip of elders: it reminds me of the reasons I fell in love with riding in the first place. Sometimes it’s good to put aside our projects and just enjoy how the world looks when you’re sitting on a horse.
Times flies and before long the first cool breeze of autumn will freshen the last hazy days of summer. This is an exciting time here at Quinta do Brejo, because we know the annual Lusitano Horse Feira in Golegã will soon be upon us!
Golegã is an experience like no other. All of the breeders bring their best horses and compete for the attention of the public with colourful displays and performances. The air is filled with music and the bustle of so many people and horses, together with the atmospheric smells of regional delicacies cooking and the smoked castanje nuts you can snack on as you explore. The festivities carry on late into the night, beyond the arenas and into the bars and restaurants, where at this time it’s commonplace that guests might have four legs as well as two!
Why not combine the horse fair with riding lessons at Quinta do Brejo? You would be most welcome to stay with us and we’ll happily arrange your journey to and from Golegã. We’re at your service and hope to welcome you soon.
This weekend has been busy with the Lusitano festival in Lisbon; classical riding lessons for old friends and new, and the arrival of a very promising three year old Lusitano, who we will school here at Quinta do Brejo. It is wonderful to see Mestre Oliveira’s old stables full and bustling with a lovely variety of equine characters of differing ages and training levels. And now each day brings new adventures, experiences, challenges and rewards.
Below, you will see photos of some special students who experienced various dressage movements for the first time.
Unfortunately, our planned Homage to Nuno Oliveira had to be postponed for reasons beyond our control, but I will keep you posted about a new date. We hope to welcome you here soon!
On the 9th of July we will pay homage to Nuno Oliveira with a special event at his former home and stables, Quinta do Brejo. You are cordially invited to join us for dinner and an evening of entertainment, including live opera and circus performances, as well as a special ridden demonstration from the latest generation of the Oliveira family.
Explore the grounds and riding facilities, discover historical artefacts left by the Maestro and share memories with those who knew and worked with him. This event is open to all. RSVP.
For those wishing to also visit the Lusitano Horse Show 2011 (7th-10th July) in Lisbon, we welcome you to stay with us in our comfortable accommodation, perhaps taking the chance to enjoy lessons on our own Lusitano stallions with Charlotte Wittbom. Please contact us to discuss your requirements or to make a booking.
We invite you to Quinta do Brejo, Portugal for our Classical Riding ‘Weekend Taster Course’.
This weekend course is designed to provide an opportunity for those new to the classical horsemanship tradition, to gain an insight into its philosophy and approaches. The course includes a brief theoretical introduction, a ridden demonstration and three personal instruction sessions with our wonderful Lusitano horses.
In June and September 2011 we will run 3 day courses combining elements of our Work in Hand course and our Classical Riding holidays, for those who wish to experience both during their stay.
Each morning, we will will explore practical, classical approaches to working from the ground – including lunging and work in hand. The afternoons will be filled with personal instruction in classical riding, with our Lusitano horses.