Chris Denton had never ridden before and confesses he never really liked horses…that is until he and his wife Dianne decided to tick off a bucket list item and go globetrotting through the Maasai Mara in Kenya. What he experienced was more than he could have ever dreamed.
This is his story.
What is your day job?
My wife, Dianne and I own and manage “Sea Horse” Diamond Beach – a uniquely horse friendly upmarket vacation home on acres, where you can bring your own horse and ride on the beach (3 hours North of Sydney). This YouTube clip gives you an idea of what you can expect.
How have horses influenced or changed your life?
We have been married for 35 years. One of the main reasons our marriage has been so successful is that Dianne spends much of her spare time with her horses, so I can go surfing whenever I want.
What is your earliest memory of horses?
I met Dianne when she was 17 years old. She was the horse woman. I didn’t have anything to do with horses until I met her.
What was your first globetrotting ride?
The Maasai Mara ride in Kenya.
What made you take the plunge and sign up for a globetrotting holiday?
I was about to go for a surf and as healthy as a horse (pun intended) one morning, and found myself in intensive care that same evening with the surgeon advising us that I was in serious trouble and may not survive the operation. Dianne and I realised that life can be a lot shorter than you think. We decided then to cross the first item off Dianne’s bucket list and ride horses in Africa.
Was this GT ride celebrating or marking a significant moment/milestone/achievement in your life? And if so, would you mind sharing?
Yes a big achievement … survival!
What is your most memorable globetrotting moment?
Dianne and I were ready to go home on the first day. We thought that it wasn’t possible to have a more exciting and memorable day than what we just experienced, but each day just kept getting better.
I know that it is a cliché but there were so many memorable moments that it is hard to choose one:
* Being charged by elephants
* Stalked by lions
* Crossing the Mara river which was full of hippos and gigantic crocodiles.
* At the Hippo River, sitting at the table with crisp white linen and candles, with a cold beer in hand, watching the hippos in the river and the multitude of wildlife (zebras, giraffe etc) walking along the river bank at sunset.
Why choose this type of travel? As in exploring a new country from the back of a horse?
I hate being away from the ocean, I don’t particularly like horses, (I had to learn to ride for this trip), I don’t like travel. I didn’t want to know anything about this trip and would have avoided it if I could. I have been to Fiji, Hawaii, Thailand and Bali and didn’t enjoy any of it. We have such a great lifestyle here that I can’t see the point of going overseas. My perfect day is a surf in the morning.
That was until I had the Globetrotting experience…
It was life changing and I will never forget what an exciting and fun time that we had. If I had such a great time (being a non-horsey person) I can only imagine what it must be like for someone who is passionate about horses!
A tip that every globetrotter should know before going on a ride…
Get rid of any expectations you may have about the trip and what you may experience … it will be way beyond your imagination and 10 times as good.
Finish this sentence – Don’t leave home without…
Your sense of adventure and your courage. A big part of the experience is being way out of your comfort zone every day.