First of all, I have to thank Workaway thanks to whom we can meet and welcome great people with whom we remain very very often friends.
I look for light and very good english style riders (only, not western) speaking a little french if possible.
Riders will train with me for 2019 endurance season, maybe for TREC competitions, and why not, will participate in competitions :)
IMPORTANT: The riders who do not know how to use a halter, clean out the feet of a horse, to brush a horse, to put a bridle and a saddle, should not contact me.
Lately, a lot of people have wasted my time and cancelled trips. Thank you for making sure that you will honour your commitments and that your family has nothing planned for you before writing to me.
Duration of stay: at least a month, but write me anyway if the duration is a little shorter, I will study on a case-by-case basis.
Our horse stud is in french countryside, to practice French language immersion. Les français sont bien évidemment les bienvenus aussi !
In 2011 classified 2nd endurance horse stud of French top 100.
We breed horse barb, arabian-barb, anglo-arabian and arabian horses. Our four-legged family consists in 45 members, stallion, mares, foals and grown-up horses that we ride mainly to prepare them for endurance races competition.
We are in a rural area of cattle and grain crops with forests. It's enough isolated. To go to the nearest town, Nevers, there are a few buses per day, except Sunday only one in the end of afternoon. It's our weakest point :(
We are simple people. If you are used to the luxury, it's not the place for you.
If you like city very much and if you need it, it's not a place for you. This is a place for nature lovers.
If you are used to luxury stables, if you are rider's kind riding with leather boots, and that you are not used to clean horses, to clean their feet, if you have never collected manure and you think it will be humiliating, if you want to sleep late in the morning, don't contact me please.
You can understand the life in the french campaign in a farm which raises animals.
Animals need care every day of the year and this is a constraint few people understand the scale.
You can perfect your French if you want and if you have bases.
You can learn full of things on the breeding, the food, the stallions, the births, etc..
You can learn and understand the precautions to be taken in riding outside because the outside is more risked than the arena of the riding school.
And finally you will discover the discipline of the endurance that few riders know well whether it is in full progress.
In exchange of accomodations, and riding gratis (but only if you are an excellent english style horse rider), you will share activities of feeding, grooming, mushing, cleaning stables, breeding during 2 or 3 hours per day.
I precise that, if you have lied to me about your riding level, I will see it at the first time you will ride a horse, and all the projects will be reduced to none, so please, you have all the interests to describe sincerely your level. Some periods of the year (winter) are OK for no level (or beginners), others absolutely not. But, and I thank you not insist, never I will be able to teach you to ride (anyway we have no horses to learn you to ride).
Important, never forget that, you will really be in France with french people.
If you have no bases in French, it will be sometimes difficult for you to understand everything, because my husband Marcel speaks not at all English, and I have pupils in formation who do not speak it either (french problem, french people are not good in foreign language).
I speak some english, but it's not my favourite mean of expression !!
If you want to learn french, you will be at the right place cause we like helping our hosts to learn our so complicated language.
The rider who wants to improve his technical farriery could begin learn and try to help my husband, who puts shoes (iron or plastic) to our horses, so may be you can become a future blacksmith !
During the spring, you will participate to the births of babies, very often during the night ... and you will assist with emotion, to the arrival of new lifes.
To ride, you really have to be a very good rider, sporty , relaxed even when we are cantering, and you have not to exceed 65kg for the respect of your friend horse. You must have a good physic condition and no problem of health (even like tendinit, articular, scoliosis, or even allergy).
The activities are mainly breeding (feeding, cleaning, various care) and riding and training, activities are very shared.
Indeed, we raise our foals and young horses ourselves.
The breaking-in of the young horses is done at home, slowly, with their rhythms.
When they are older, we participate with them to endurance races (from 20 to 130km). Endurance is an outside discipline for which the training is long. Also, if you wish to ride, training can be intensive sometimes, that's the reason of good condition is required.
The horse rider has to know and respect his horse, he has to learn how to make do with the difficulties with the ground, the meteo, the hills, to finish with a horse in a excellent physical condition.
And especially, the rider must behave like a friend with his horse, because for us, our horses are our friends and our family members.
Here we keep our old horses until the end and we take care as the others.
French, english if really need
Accomodation depends of the number of people present. Sometimes room separate, sometimes shared studio with shower and in summer, if some friends arrive at home, may be you could sleep in a tent in the garden but always with access to conveniences, if you are not afraid of the nature of course !
I don't clean your rooms, you will have to do it yourself regularly ...
Meals are prepared by me usually, but I'm willing to get help! and sometimes (rare) I have no time to prepare, and each one must do it.
You will not eat meat here.
Bikes are here to permit you to escape alone to visit the region. You also have the bus, but frequency is not very high :)
If you really want to ride free, be honest with yourself about your level, beginner riders (I mean even riders who have riden 20, 30, 40 times) can not ride my horses, and I can't teach you to ride cause it is not my job, and I have no horses for that.
You must be attentive, observer, lively, energic, reactive, and especially smiling and interested :)
You must be polished and respectful, you are not in a hotel, you are welcomed as friends.
If you change your plans you have to speak to me about it so that I know it at once.
I must also precise that, the first week here can be hard, cause you must learn quickly a lot of things such as the horses (name, place) and all the details about a lot of things.
Also, french is our language, if you come here to speak french and if you can't make efforts to understand and practice, you will be lost because it's total immersion !
If you have not begin to learn french, you are not obliged to learn it, I can speak you with my bad english !
We have no more cats since 1st august 2014, we have a very, very kind female dog, DOLBY.
Les français sont évidemment très bienvenus !
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week, depends of weather and season, and depends on skills and wishes for each - max 25