Saturday, July 28, 2012

Opportunity costs

It's been awhile since I've posted here, and I've been uncharacteristically silent for a few reasons.

First being travel has got the best of me, and I'm some weeks, without internet connection. The last three alone have been spent living out of a trailer at various functions away from home. 

The other reason has been much more thoughtful.

The last few weeks have been trying, really trying, and the schedule has been more than tough. Sinari and I left for VA on the 5th, only to end up somewhere entirely different on the same day, 13 hours later. We turned around and went to the Dressage at Lexington show (mixed results, but broke 60 percent) six days later and then traveled home. All in all, spent roughly 20 hours on the road.

I saw a lot on that trip, from young international horses to adult amateurs kicking along. Even the Amish got involved at some point. 

What initially was planned as a training trip, ended up being a training loss minus one or two people chipping in a long the way who kept us up and going.

I did a lot of thinking on this trip and where I wanted to end up, I talked to a lot of people who know me and respect the goals I have in mind. While I was on the road I spent roughly three hours on the phone with different individuals.  After those conversations, I came to the collective conculusion that my herd and I have diverging goals.

For the first five hours of this realization, it was horrible. It felt like I was giving up on family and I was knocked in the gut, but I knew this day was coming, I just hadn't accepted it or planned for it as well as I should have.

Sinari, who is the light of my life, is 13 this year. She is committed for the rest of the year and should reach PSG by September. She's my first FEI horse that I've made from scratch, she earned the bronze and is in the process of earning the silver, she's a premium mare with the Hanoverian book (Weser-Ems Pony), she is the only Welsh mare in the US doing this sport at this level, and has taken me from nothing till now. Those accomplishments will never be taken away from either one of us. She's an incredible worker, and gives 100 percent every day of the work, but physically it gets to be too much. She's earned the right to step back and be comfortable in the last six years of competition as an FEI Pony for a junior and allowed to shine in the world stage.

She's the touchstone of my program and she will never be sold. When she's ready to retire, she will retire with me in a back yard somewhere, fat and happy.

I look at Sincere, who I bred, and raised so far from birth. He's an athletic, beautiful, capable pony who is a card and fantastic to be around every day. He's everything that his breeding represents. However, looking at his age group and conformationally what he is, he's not going to make a class dressage horse. After working him through a jump chute, it's obvious what his career path is, and what he enjoys the most. Blood never lies and with Kupido and Grannus in the mix, well, the boy can't help but have springs.

I've put him on the market to get him to a home where he's going to shine in the hunters. 

This begs the question of what's next. The answer is I don't know. There are somethings working out for fall and for next spring. There are some possibilities as well, I won't know how 2013 will really be until November.