Susie Edwards became a globetrotter at age 53, when her fabulous new life as an independent empty-nester allowed her to spread her wings and live the way she wanted to – which just happened to involve an absolute BINGE of horse riding holidays! With many more to come, read on to learn about Susie’s method of living her best life!
What is your day job?
I’m a TAFE student and I also do admin work.
How have horses influenced or changed your life?
Along with Great Danes, they are the love of my life and when I inhale them, the rest of the world disappears. (I love my daughters too, but I don’t need to grab their jowls and schmoosh their nose into my face to smell them – so it’s obviously a different type of love).
What is your earliest memory of horses?
Filling every square inch of my bedroom in horse posters, collecting horseshoes, building up a complete grooming kit, studying and memorising every breed, piece of equipment and part of their anatomy and then… never having a horse my own. Decades on, most of that knowledge has fallen through the holes in my brain, which is really annoying. However, I have recently bought myself a grooming kit to use on some horses that I now have regular access to. (I love going to Horseland, even though I kind of feel like a bit of a fraud!!)
What was your childhood pony called?
Well, I had a couple of plastic ones called Rascal and Nightmare. Does that count?
What does riding or being with horses mean to you?
I lose myself. It doesn’t matter whether I am riding them, grooming them, massaging them or just watching them. I am completely at peace and in my happy place the minute I can soak myself in eau de pony.
What have horses taught you the most?
They know the truth. If you want to truly connect with a horse, you can’t be needy, or arrogant, or manipulative. They see who you truly are and they will respond accordingly.
What was your first Globetrotting ride?
The Margaret River Ride – November 2017.
What made you take the plunge and sign up for a Globetrotting holiday?
My new, independent life and celebrating the fact that I had finally discovered who I truly was, who I wanted to be and what I wanted to do, at the age of 53. Better late than never!
Were any of your Globetrotting rides celebrating or marking a significant moment/milestone/achievement in your life? And if so, would you mind sharing?
Becoming a single, empty-nester, suddenly and unexpectedly, after 30 years of marriage! So, after a year or so of carnage, I started to rebuild my life and make plans. When I realised I didn’t have to like golf anymore, researching holidays based on riding hours instead of golf course ratings became a novelty that will NEVER wear off!!
What Globetrotting rides have you completed/planned/dreamed about?
The Margaret River Ride (November 2017), the Craig’s Hut and High Country Ride (March 2018), The Kimberley Ride (June 2018), British Columbia, Canada (September 2018), and the Tassie Tiger Trail (January 2019). Yes, I know – I kind of binged! Panic set in recently when I realised I had no more riding trips on the horizon. However, I’ve just fixed that and booked back-to-back New Zealand South and North Island rides in Jan 2020. I plan to ride my way around the world until my body or my money fails me – whichever comes first.
Why choose this type of travel? As in exploring a new country from the back of a horse?
Why would you NOT join a group of like minded people, recommended by a reputable company (gotta love Globetrotting), in a destination you want to explore, knowing that even if any one – or all – of the weather, people, or scenery disappoint, it doesn’t matter because you’re gonna be riding a horse for hours every day!!?? And if you end up taking a friend or relative along for the ride (pun intended), then that’s great! But even if you fly solo, you’re guaranteed to make some great friends – I’m still in touch with at least one person from every single ride so far.
What is your most memorable Globetrotting moment?
My first ride (Margaret River) – driving into Jester’s Flat along a red dirt road with Mumford & Sons ‘I Will Wait’ blaring on the radio, knowing I was about to fulfill a lifelong dream. However, doing the Tassie Tiger Trail with my gorgeous sister was pretty special too!
Who is your favourite trail horse of all time and why?
I am a horse slut (pardon my French!). I fall madly in love with every single horse I ride. If had to be most grateful to one, it would have to be a friend’s horse that I used to ride back in the 80s, when I was a teenager. I was full of confidence, but short on ability. I fell off him twice – at a flat out gallop – when my friend and I used to race each other in the Northern Beaches bushland. And somehow, both times I landed on my feet! How lucky!! It was more good luck than good management, I can assure you!
A tip that every globetrotter should know before going on a ride…
Chances are, you are about to experience one of life’s highlights. Forget about any expectations – you can’t control the weather, the guests, or any unexpected ups and downs. Saturate yourself in your fabulous hosts, new friends and your gorgeous horse during the day. Soak yourself in the amazing food, wine and company at night, sleep tight and go with the flow.
Finish this sentence: Don’t leave home without…
Checking what you’ve actually put in your bag. I turned up to The Kimberley Ride (not too many corner stores out there) with two pyjama tops instead of a top & bottom, and one long sock. (Thanks Lyndal – I still have your donated pair of socks).