This horse lark is far too stressful! We are into the final week (as in just a few days).
Our trip to Hambleden was a bit eventful in the travel department. We had late times, so I went to work first thing for a few hours. Just as I was leaving the office, I checked the traffic – “10 miles of stationary traffic. Avoid” said the automated traffic lady. Eek. Rushed home and asked Chris to find a new route the old fashioned way ( a map) whilst I plaited and threw tack in lorry. We made it, but it was all a bit of a rush, so the dressage was best forgotten. We then had a big gap, so leisurely had Dan’s photo taken by Katie (e-Venting’s resident photographer), who was doing amazing things in the corner of the dressage warm up. How can anyone not want a pic like this?
We tried hard to JKC in the show jumping ( Just Keep Coming to those who didn’t read the last blog) and were rewarded by a nice clear round. A fab clear xc through the bluebells was good for my confidence, so a good day out despite the stressage.
This final week, you may remember, I was supposed to be on holiday, having some lessons, packing for a nice relaxing trip. Not in the office, busy, finding polite ways ( and not so polite ways) of saying “ No, I am not attending a meeting to discuss this on Tuesday. I will have a call on Monday. Oh, you don’t want to do that because it’s a bank holiday? Well, think how much you don’t want to talk on Monday, multiply it by six billion and that’s how much I don’t want to speak to you on Tuesday.” Sigh. Guess I will end up on the phone on the way to Badminton.. but the phone goes off when I arrive. I don’t say that very often!
Assuming, that is, that we get to go.
Earlier this week we set off ( after escaping early from the office) to do a test and retest at a lovely local show centre organized by the South East Eventers League. I haven’t ridden through the test yet, as Dan tends to learn them more easily than I do, so best not to do it too often.
When we arrived, he had somehow managed to twist a shoe, and tread on the toes clip, which was now firmly wedged in his foot. Aghhhhhhh…..
Phoned the farrier. Fortunately I have an amazing farrier. Poor John promised to call in on the way home. Told me to pad it and wrap it so he didn’t make it worse, and drove slowly home. John arrives and takes his shoe off, Dan flinches when the hoof testers squeezed… ouch. Ice tub. Arnica. Ice tub again. Magic gooey stuff which is supposed to be wonderful. Panic. A lot.
He is getting better, but three days off is not my idea of good prep the week before we go. Francis has tried to reassure me that it won’t harm him, and in fact it might help, as the temptation is to drill whereas its often better to relax….Oh well: three choices in life – Give Up, Give In, Give it Everything. I’m voting for the latter but by a thin margin…
I had his foot in an ice bucket at 4.45am this morning before I left for work. He was sound on the surface, it not quite on the yard, so we are planning to work on a surface from tomorrow for the next few days before we go. I hope.
He gets a bit excited when he stays away from home, so as our dressage is mid afternoon on Tuesday we are going to drive down Tuesday morning, pretending it’s just another event. It also means poor Casper is only home alone for one night.
I will be so relieved to get there and trot down the centre line nothing much else matters. My objective is a completion rosette, I have no expectation of a big result, I’m just delighted to be there. To be amongst those flying the flag for old amateurs with full time day jobs and one pony to play with. To prove that it can be done. That those Tuesday November nights in the dark, freezing rain going round in circles on a plank that purports to be a horse can actually translate into something which is truly on the bucket list of life for a horsey kid.
Cross country day, May 3rd would have been the 65th Birthday of my late brother, Brother Bertie’s namesake.
Give in, Give up, Give it Everything. My brother never gave up.
I hope we can do him proud.