Simon and Phillipa discovered the Merry March stud farm on the very first day of the holidays. There, grazing in sunlit paddocks, were the most beautiful palominos with their streaming silvery manes and tails. The loveliest of all was the three-year-old Golden Ripple, and when Simon and Phillipa made friends with Lynne, whose sister worked at Merry March, she told them what high hopes Mrs Russell, the owner set on him. He was the only pony left of an original strain with which her father had started Merry March, and though he was very valuable, she would never, or could never, sell him. Lynne’s friendship made a great difference to the holiday. She took them riding in the hills, showed them how to jump, helped them to have a wonderful time. And eventually their liking for her, and their admiration for Merry March, led them, and Jake, the gypsy boy, into adventure high in the hills. For Golden Ripple disappeared.