Imagine if you will the following picture as you are walking through the grocery store: before you stands a woman with a ball cap shoved on her head to hide her sweaty, helmet-flattened hair, her shirt is also wet with sweat and has a green smear of something across her chest, her tan pants are close-fitting and also have unidentified stains on them, and she has on a pair of tie-dyed Zocks with her feet wearing a pair of clogs. As you approach her, there is an intoxicating aroma of horse, sweat, and hay with a hint of leather conditioner lingering in the background. Do you ask that woman, “Do you ride?” Really?! The devil on my shoulder is goading me to say, “why no I don’t, why do you ask?” The angel on my other shoulder twists my earlobe until I do say, “why yes I do.” Why else would I be clad in such odd attire? Unless I was aiming to get my photo on the last page of Glamour magazine with the black box obscuring my identity, there really isn’t any other reason to look that awful except when you are done riding but desperately need groceries.
Have had two productive rides this weekend. I have tried to focus on our trot rhythm and my proper timing for half halts. Sometimes I really feel like an uncoordinated klutz in the saddle. It gives you a true respect for those riders trying out for the US Olympic team who regularly score in the high 70s at Grand Prix. In any case, I persevere and continue to practice. Still debating on whether or not to carry my whip at the next show. Sometimes it seems to help, but shifting the whip from one hand to the other is another one of those klutz-inspired moments for me. And then I have to decide where does the whip need to be to make it useful. I could really use it behind my left leg when asking for right lead canter, but within a stride desperately need it at the right shoulder to keep us from collapsing to the right. AARGGH. It will have to be a show day decision and based on how Ike feels in warm up.
We did a practice session with the trailer yesterday. Ike performed flawlessly. Phew. One less thing to fret about.
Ike also is in need of another beauty school day. It seems like his mane has grown at least an inch since April and he is also sporting a Miami Vice five o’clock shadow. Put that on the list of things to do this week. The dry cleaner did manage to remove the slobber from my show coat. Thank goodness they put the protective plastic sleeve over the clean item…I managed to promptly drop the coat as soon as I arrived at the barn. Couldn’t even make it the 50 feet from my car to the trailer. Klutz.
One week from today is our Training Level debut. I think I’m actually a bit nervous already. It will be a long and sleepless week.