I’m not a big jewelry person. I like it in theory, but always feel so ridiculous wearing it that I take most of it off before leaving the house. Day to day, I wear a pair of pearl stud earrings and a stainless steel Victorinox Swiss Army watch. (I cannot say enough good things about the watch.) Every now and then, I’ll swap the watch for a simple leather or cord bracelet or add a necklace, but I am really, really not a jewelry person. For a long time, I’ve known that an engagement ring is just not for me.
Last week, Moe and Gina attended Green Country Dressage’s annual junior rider camp. I was happy to let them go; their teenage riders regularly have lessons on them, and I figure that the more dressage training the horses get, the better! (Even if it’s teenagers doing the training.)
The camp was held at gorgeous Prairie Lane Farm. There were indoor arenas, outdoor arenas, deluxe stalls with runs attached in a big, airy barn, a covered viewing area with lawn chairs! Camp started on Thursday and I stopped by on Friday to say hello to the ponies and make sure they were behaving themselves.
|Gina feeling luxurious|
|How Moe REALLY feels about dressage.|
Moe was hamming it up and reliving his Pony Club days, mugging every possible person for every possible treat, head hanging out of his stall, sticking his tongue out, tossing his head, curling his upper lip back. Gina, however, is too dignified for such behavior and promptly went back to eating her hay after accepting one treat.
Thanks to No Hour Wasted‘s mad video skillz, I have a video of Gina’s lovely dressage test. What is my right hand doing? How can I make it look like I don’t have T-Rex arms? Do you think the judge liked my neon orange fleece jacket??
And now on to schooling show championships in November!
I know, I know, show recap posts are really only exciting for the person who’s writing them. But I wanted to let y’all know that a) Gina didn’t kill me and b) it went pretty well.
My ride times were pretty reasonable, with dressage at 11:20 AM and XC at 2:02 PM. This meant that while I did get up at 5 AM and get to the barn by 7 AM, it could have been much, much worse. Gallery Farm is near Oklahoma City, so it’s about a 2.5 hour drive from where the ponies live. We pulled out with Gina (who kept her socks super-white overnight) and Freddie (for company and experience) around 8 AM, and after many turns (and a couple of turn arounds), we arrived and parked next to our friends Rachael and Sarah.
Freddie about fell down getting out of the trailer, but recovered gamely and spent the next six hours standing tied to the trailer, eating hay and drinking/playing in the water buckets we had tied up for them.
|Freddie’s happy place.|
|Gina (left) and Freddie (right) are unimpressed by shows.|
Both mares seemed to get along reasonably well. Fred made a couple of ugly faces at Gina and also drank all of her water (while ignoring her own bucket), but was otherwise fine. No calling, no squealing, no kicking. Freddie is a champion at standing around. Maybe she’s missed her calling as a halter horse.
|Rio 2016, amiright?|
|Bonus pic of super cute Rambler & Sarah, who were 3rd in the Starter division.|
I’m really pleased with how Gina behaved. I think she had a good time- I know I did. There’s an eventing derby in a couple of weeks- Fred is getting some time off, so maybe I’ll enter Gina. And maybe we’ll even move up a division (or two)!
On Saturday, Freddie and I hitched a ride to a local dressage schooling show. We didn’t compete, but I felt like I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get her out and about away from home. It was cold over the weekend- Saturday morning was 52, overcast, and windy- and I was a little apprehensive that Freddie would be feeling exuberant and try to murder me once I climbed on.
|So chilly that barn dogs needed blankets! (Deets, Joey [green], Maisy [purple])|
She loaded and unloaded from the trailer like a pro, but seemed totally bewildered by her surroundings at the farm where the show was held. (Trailer parking was in the middle of a tree-filled field.) But she stood tied to the trailer pretty calmly. The stuffed hay bag in front of her probably helped.
|“This isn’t the race track or home!”|
Five of Richal’s students were competing on three of Richal’s horses, so we spent the morning hustling around, grooming and tacking horses.
|Adorable tiny child grooming adorable pony Max.|
We all headed to the warm up ring once the ponies and kids were ready; I was on foot leading Freddie, and we were accompanied by one of the students riding Training level later on Sundance. The four of us stood outside the warm up area; Sundance grazed and Freddie circled around me nervously. When the warm up ring cleared out, I walked Fred around in it. She was unimpressed for the most part, although some drainage pipes gave her a start. After her very minor spook, she settled down and took advantage of the grass.
|“These Intro tests are a snooze fest; I’m hungry.”|
We watched some of the kids’ tests. Freddie paid very close attention.
|“So that’s what walking looks like…”|
After lunch, we headed back to the trailer for some food. We tied the horses up in front of their hay bags, offered them some water, and settled down to enjoy horse show staples like granola bars and goldfish crackers. All of a sudden, there was some commotion on the other side of the trailer: a squeal, some clattering, and some thudding. Richal and I dashed over to see what caused the ruckus. Freddie was nonchalantly eating her hay, while adorable gray pony Max was staring at her, bug eyed and holding up his right hind leg a little. Freddie had nailed him right in the stifle!
|Fat Paint horse Paige is a cute mover; even cuter with a tiny kid aboard.|