Sunday, March 25, 2012

Mud, Forward and Suicidal Frogs

All in all the weekend was a success. I wanted an educational experience and we definitely got one. Seneca and I geared up for a wet xc school on Saturday and left the Spotted Beast behind in the barn. Super hubs walked out with us toting the camera as always. I met up with my schooling partners a couple of ladies from Oakdale Farm where I've schooled before, and a few others that I didn't know.

Chris shows up and we commence with the big scary. I thought the water jump would be the biggest problem, not so much. It was actually a table jump that just kept kicking our butt. It was me, I knew. The continuing theme of my riding life is I need to be more confident, commit to the jump and be agressive.

But we ended on a good note and we hurried Seneca back to the barn to dry off and then loaded Cowboy before stopping at the hotel, checking on the dogs and changing in to dry clothes. Because while on the xc course the rain came down with a vengence and the only dry part of me was my feet.

Seneca and I catching major air over the BN fence at VAHC.
She thought it was a Prelim fence and was all "bring it on, we can jump it!!"

With Cowboy safely tucked in at the trainers super hubs and I headed back to our hotel.  The single scariest thing the hotel reception can say to you when you come back in from a long day?  "Are you missing a Golden Retriever?"  OMG!  Our dog Georgia, who is deathly afraid of thunder storms had opened the hotel room door and had been roaming the halls and frightening the guests.  Thankfully the hotel did not kick us out.

Sunday dawns bright, clear and dry.  Yeah right, it was just more grey, and rain.  I am behind getting over to the horse center, but Seneca is patiently waiting for breakfast. I left her eating and headed up the action on the hill to get my dressage bridle number since there hadn't been one in my packet from the day before. While up there waiting for the stadium course to get posted soo many people were talking about scratching their xc ride that it made me doubly nervous about doing it. My mare was barefoot, and it had been raining for days.

I head back down, hit the trailer to change clothes, throwing on my xc shirt under a rain jacket.  I had seen loads of people wearing their hunt/dressage coats and stock ties, but it was raining miserably, wasn't going to let up and it was a starter trial, so I just put my informal clothes on. I hurried back, tacked up the High Queen in record time and hustled my way back up the hill.  I had exactly five minutes to warm up for dressage.  It wasn't the best test, but she was loads better than the first time, and actually remembered what the halt meant.  WINWIN!

I had an hour before stadium and I still hadn't walked xc.  So I tucked Seneca back in her stall, super hubs, Georgia and I head out to walk the course.  Except there was no course to walk.  There were no other riders out walking, and all the numbers had been pulled from the jumps.  *frowny confusion*  Had they cancelled xc and not told me?  Yep.

Well I was actually relieved I wanted more practice and to not have my horse trying to swim over the fences.  I had at that point fifteen minutes to get retacked in stadium gear and back up the hill to be on time.  I made it, jumped two low schooling fences once a piece, glanced at my watch and got another *frown* I was on time but the ring was not.  I circled and circled, and circled some more.  Most of the time the High Queen does not deign to stand still at events.  This time she was happy to huddle close to the other horses and stand dripping in the rain.  Meanwhile super hubs was proving his worth once again.  He was standing with the ring stewards under a small tent and the stewards kept slipping other people in ahead of me, when they had already specifically said they were going in order by rider number.  After they tried to slip four more horses in front of me he got very vocal about the unfairness of doing that since others who were there on time had been waiting quite a long time.

Finally it was our turn.  I had already determined because we were going to be jumping stadium on sloppy grass that I was going to trot as much as possible.  Seneca was definitely a star.  She only rubbed one fence and it stayed up. So we finished clear and on our dressage score of 47.14

And the suicidal frogs?  That's for the next post.  Next up the CT at Campbell Springs.   Keep it between the flags everyone.

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