52 Portraits of a Stranger: Jonquil.

photographer Bodmin

I read a quote this week....


I actually believe that is so incredibly true. Everything is online now and you can show up there and be whatever person you want to be, so it's difficult to tell whats real and whats fake. Also, a large majority of people can't sit and have a conversation anymore and be totally present as they continually check their phones. Getting a notification has actually been scientifically proven to release a chemical in the brain that makes you feel good. It's an addiction and one I am guilty of myself.

So I actually realised today, while spending a lovely couple hours on Bodmin with a wonderful lady and her Dartmoor ponies how this project is more important to me than I thought. I am actively seeking connection, conversation and inspiration with people I have never met before in my entire life. I am actively choosing to be present in the world.

Today's connection was with Jonquil, a kindred spirit really. We had a lot of common ground the biggest and most obvious one is the love of horses. 

Jonquil loved ponies back when she was a little girl in the 60s. Despite non-horsey parents she was fortunate enough that they gave her the opportunity to have that connection with these beautiful and emotionally intelligent animals. 

Her dream was to own a riding school.

As she grew up she got married, had children and had a job as a speech and language therapist. Her life as a mother, wife and someone who helped children kept her busy. But still she loved ponies. Because that's the thing once you have fallen in love with the equine and experienced that bond, it never really leaves you. 

One day a little over a decade ago she read an article about the Dartmoor ponies and how they were trying to help sustain the ancient breed. Jonquil bought two not long after and hasn't looked back. 

And somehow that and her work with speech and language therapy led her down the path of Equine Assisted Learning and from there she spent time helping children with Autism. When she said that to me my heart lit up. After reading The Horse Boy and Riding Between the Worlds I was suddenly thrust myself into awareness of the amazing skills horses have to help people. 

Now after moving to Bodmin last year Jonquil I suppose is at a crossroads of where to go next. Crossroads are always an interesting place to be but if you have a genuine passion for something and you stay true to it you always find your way. 

Meeting Jonquil and her ponies was such a great experience, I actually wound up spending 2hrs down there! I am looking forward to next weeks in London! 

Jonquil I hope you like the portrait and thank you so much for spending your morning with me. xx





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