22nd Jan 2013
I lost a friend last week and have found it hard to go back to the blog but we have to unfold the new normal. Much has been said and written about Michael Buckley and I will say no more than that it was always a pleasure to meet him and a privilege to know him and that he was one of the rare people who brought success wherever he went, yet accepted little credit for it. He had a rapport and empathy with animals and cared for their comfort and welfare before any other work consideration. The depth of feeling towards him last week was no surprise.
The year had started so promisingly – we were sliding down a snowy mountain in Austria on New Year’s Day and feeling that things could not be better. We have been busy with streams of visitors to see Dragon Pulse and Famous Name and happy to hear the reaction to both. We had a first foal to herald the Spring, a filly foal by Sea The Stars on the farm where his story began.
We were to have the ITBA seminar in Kilkenny which was postponed until February 18th, which allows the participants more time to come up with ways to make your business profitable. For me that included a trip to Qatar at the weekend to learn about developments there. In a region which is the foundation of the economic wellbeing of the planet, Qatar is investing heavily in its own future and the city of Doha is expanding upwards and outwards at a furious pace. There is a racecourse which dates back to 1975 but there is an equine tradition which goes back many centuries. The influence of Qatar in our world will continue to grow.
Having missed the chance to do so at the appropriate time and having had such a shocking start to the year it would seem hollow to wish for everyone to be “Happy” but I wish all readers a healthy year and I always say that it is better to be optimistic and wrong than it is to be pessimistic and right. The journey lasts longer than the arrival.