Sunday, September 30, 2012
Dance till you're dead
Welcome to fall.
I love and loathe this part of the season for a lot of different things.
It's the best weather to train and compete in. The horses are getting their second winds and they feel fantastic. It's the time that young horses start their careers, and the older campaigners get to go out and hack about. It's also championship season time, where all the work you've put in shows off, hopefully, at the right time.
It also marks the end of the long march of inspections, travel, shows, the pressure and the regular grind. It means that I don't have to keep the trailer stocked and hooked up. I can go out with friends that I haven't seen since March, go see family or take a non-horse-related trip and maybe, just maybe spend a few weeks at my house crashed on the couch.
It also means waking up and going home in the dark, hairy bra's for clipping said horses, extra shavings, blanket changing, heated water buckets, mash, fall shots, dental work, pulling shoes and apples from the local cider mill.
This fall denotes the end of a long, interesting season and the start of something entirely too different.
My horses, like everyone else, are benefiting from the change in season. Sinari has sprouted a coat, which makes work shorter until we get the clippers out. Her workouts are more playful, but will gear in this week for another run at FEI in two weeks. Sincere is getting his act together and really start to come along, he still has a baby neck, but all the mechanics are there especially when he relaxes. He'll be shipped out in November to start his East Coast career. I've started a little bit of in hand work with him to get the idea of lateral work in and also start creating some flexibility. Reba is also really starting to develop her canter. Her trot and walk are really nice, but the canter is still weaker so transition work on the ground and under saddle has really started to help her organize herself.
Also I got to travel a bit to Devon where I caught up with old faces and new ones. Devon is magic, and for those who haven't been the show (which is typically started with rain and goes into monsoon) the fall CDI is a staple and attracts a number of great rides. It's the only place in the US where you'll see babies straight to international Grand Prix in about three square miles of actual ground. It's also insanity.
This year I didn't bring a horse, but I was somewhere between press, at large groom and spectator. I enjoyed it but without a horse, I felt a little out of place. The shopping made up for that fact. It's something that I'm slowly feeling that showing there is something obtainable, and with the quality that is now coming out, it's on the goal list.