Melissa Kite

Melissa Kite

The wit and wisdom of the horse dentist

The horse dentist put down his medieval-looking implements and pinned me to the spot with a look. ‘Those guys,’ he said, reaching into the yawning jaws of the builder boyfriend’s black and white cob to check the back teeth he had just filed, ‘load horses and take them from England to Ireland and from Ireland

My rodent house guest has a Benadryl habit

The mouse has been eating his way through the medicine cabinet to the extent that I am really quite frightened of confronting him. I opened the cupboard above the sink to find an entire blister pack of paracetamol, several sachets of Solpadeine and some 400mg ibuprofen nibbled away. Also scoffed were two packs of antihistamine,

The BB wants to put my dream farm on a skip

‘Have you got your passport? Your phone? Your wallet?’ The builder boyfriend patted his pockets and told me not to worry as we drove through the Gatwick drop-off lane where they charge you £5 to open your car door for three seconds and push someone out. When I arrived back home, he texted: ‘I left

I have found heaven in West Cork

A bay mare was standing over a foal curled up sleeping at her feet. Yawning and struggling to keep her eyes open, she was snoozing herself in the sun-drenched paddock of a small white farmhouse. If I had stopped the car to admire the scene every time the scene was this perfect, then I would

How not to conduct a house viewing

The lady standing on the doorstep did not need to tell me what she thought of my house, because the look on her face said it all. I was still fussing over the minor details of how the place looked while the builder boyfriend waited for me in the car, engine running, because we get

Why do people assume I am posh?

If we cram any more doctors into our spare rooms we can put a sign outside advertising NHS accommodation. We came by the first one when he answered my ad on a well-known website, booked for a few nights and ended up staying for years. He has a family home elsewhere, but needs somewhere to

Why I’ve sacked my estate agent

The estate agent flashed a sarcastic smile and said it wasn’t so much that the market was in a bad place, rather that my property got so much ‘negative feedback’. I stared back at her, fuming. I had popped into the offices of this agency to ask for my key back, which I forgot to

The vegans have landed in West Cork

After a day’s house-hunting in West Cork, I texted the builder boyfriend to say that we were too late. The vegans had landed. This was my second trip to view farms in Ireland and I fell even more in love with the rugged, sometimes desolate landscape punctuated by friendly market towns with bunting strung across

My proof that God exists

We had planted a cluster of daffodils on the spaniel’s grave, but after a few days the weather battered them down. Sadly, the little yellow flowers began to curl up and wither in the force of the wind and hail that was pelting the small wooded copse where we laid Cydney to rest. I chose

How to outsmart a mouse

‘Mr Mouse’s days of fine dining are over,’ said the builder boyfriend as he put the finishing touches to his rodent anti-climbing device in the larder. This was a slice of cardboard, gaffer-taped sideways to the shelf to prevent the mouse who has been lodging with us from accessing it after climbing up the metal

Power-crazed zealots have taken over Surrey AA

‘What’s Bill W. got to do with it?’ said one of the committee members to the others as they discussed how best to ban people from meetings. This is a bit like saying ‘What’s L. Ron Hubbard got to do with it?’ at a Scientology convention, or ‘What’s Jesus got to do with it?’ at

My pony has an astonishing digestive system

The pony grabbed the bag of carrots and ran across the field with it in her mouth, tail in the air, munching on the entire thing, including, of course, the plastic. She was so pleased with herself there was no way I was getting near her. She ran around in circles, bucking and cavorting and

The builder boyfriend is no figment of my imagination

The lady who walks her dog past my horses every day was obviously eager to tell me something. I have exchanged only a few polite words with her in the past but as she made her way slowly towards my field gate, she lingered, cutting a lonely figure. ‘Let’s go and talk to that lady,’

The rise of the village poo-painters

After they banned horses from the village green and surrounding common land, I set about trying to find out why, for it seemed such a strange thing to do. Forbidding dark green signs saying ‘No Horse Riding By Order Of The Parish Council’ marked every track running through 30 acres of public land, while the

The case against a cashless society

‘We don’t take cash,’ said the boy behind the counter in Pret after I tried to hand him a £5 note and two pound coins. ‘My’ ham and cheese baguette and bottle of Coke sat in a brown paper bag on the counter and a woman standing beside me grimaced as she waited to be

I am losing faith in private healthcare

‘Next!’ shouted the bouffant-haired lady dressed in a terrifyingly crisp green and white skirt suit. She was sitting behind the glass-screened reception desk of the private hospital where my mother had just had her knee replaced. This formidable dame I took to be a positive sign of the excellence of a healthcare establishment where one

The limits of left-wing inclusivity

When we put the house on the market, my environmentally conscious neighbours disappeared on a holiday so long I asked another neighbour where they had gone. ‘On a cruise,’ she said, but I thought that unlikely, because these people have a book on climate change on a shelf near their front window, so how on

Surrey is the capital of denial

Driving through the road widening works at junction ten, I noticed a horse being ridden down a muddy passageway that was about to become the hard shoulder. It had not yet been tarmacked, but the diggers had cleared away the trees from the slice of heathland and it was being flattened, in readiness for surfacing