Me and Blondie heading into class
Disclaimer - Please ignore typos - I am too freaking tired to proofread this. If there are glaring errors, please email me and I'll fix them. Otherwise, please ignore them.
So, the first show of the season has blown by. It was full of frustrations, but also a sense of accomplishment. I also am quite sleep deprived, so forgive the brief overview.
Friday night was the night of frustration. I was driving Blondie, and we were last in the Show Pleasure Driving Class. I was so disappointed! A said that my hands were all over and the mare's head not bridled. At all. D told me it was a good drive, but it is hard for Blondie to compete with the other horse because she was so much more necky than Blondie. I pondered that all night long. Is it possible that even if my horse is perfect, we'll still never win anything because of her conformation? I know that she wasn't perfect on Friday, but I still refuse to accept that. She wins so many of the pretty horse classes, surely she can win some performance classes, too.
Saturday morning is when the pretty classes were held, so I was looking forward to watching Blondie's in-hand class. She usually places very well in them. Not yesterday. You'd have thought a hornet flew up her ass, she was so mad. Mad, mad, mad. D couldn't even get her to stand up in front of the judge. It was just awful. Even with her horrid behavior, she still wasn't last (5 of 6) so wonder where she would have placed if she had behaved herself. D was less than happy with her, and back at the barn, he gave her a crash course in how to be pretty for in-hand classes. Argh!
I waited until the lunch break to make a break for it. I just needed to get away from the show. I discovered a really tasty Mexican restaurant on Jolly Road called Cancun on Friday, so I ended up going there again yesterday. The food is inexpensive and good. Then I went back to the hotel to try to take a nap. That never happened because people kept called me on my cell phone. I finally gave up and got ready for the driving class that night and headed back to the fairgrounds.
My timing sucked, and I arrived right as the last afternoon class was wrapping up. That meant a 2 hour break before the evening session. Instead of driving back to the hotel, I went and read in A's Mo-Ho. She's got an old RV, which according to her, has all the comforts of life. I have to agree. I wish I had an air conditioner, toilet, and kitchen on wheels. Her puppy Cowboy - I call him Cowpoke - kept me company, and I spent a relaxing hour there. Of course, I missed the exhibitors' dinner, but I still a little full of nachos and chile rellenos, so I wasn't overly upset. Besides, Pancheros is right across the street from the hotel!
I was not very enthusiastic about the driving class before hand. Everything was very rushed Saturday night, and there were so many back to back classes with our barn that I was starting to stress that Blondie wouldn't be ready to go by the time the gate opened for our class. We had time to trot once up and down the warm up area, and then we had to rush into the arena, as the other horse was already in. You know, the necky mare that we didn't have a chance of beating. Sigh.
I changed how I sit in the buggy for the class, sitting as far back on the seat as possible, bracing against the back support with my legs jammed into the front of the buggy. I got after Blondie right away, using my whole body to bring her head back. Every time we trotted past A, she told me to keep doing what I was doing. Blondie walked when she was supposed to, had two gears of trot like she was supposed to. In the line up, I was shocked beyond belief when her number was called as the winner. I looked at D and said, "Holy shit, we won." It's the first championship class that I have ever won, and we received a nifty cooler and a commemorative plate in addition to the ribbon. I was starting to feel better about spending all that money to go to the horse show again.
Me and Classi before our class
I didn't sleep well because I was riding Classi in the morning, and I still don't feel every comfortable on her. A warmed her up, then she got on Blondie, who she was showing in the same class. I was a little bummed that I couldn't watch them. Jen and Sammy were also in the class, so there were plenty of friendly faces. Not that I noticed any of them.
D had to head Classi into the ring because she is afraid of the gate. Once in, I was so tense that I held her back from trotting almost the whole first rail. I finally relaxed a little when she kept trying to do her job. She really took care of me, and we ended up being 3rd out of a fairly big class. Not bad for only riding her six times. Blondie and A were second. Yeah!
Back at the barn, D asked if I wanted to ride Blondie or Classi in the championship. That was a hard one. If A rode her, she might have won. I decided to ride her, and we ended up being last. We picked up the wrong canter lead the first way, and I didn't keep her bridled, but it's the best I've ever ridden her, and I finally felt comfortable on her, especially at the canter. Riding that choppy Arabian is helping me, after all!
Now I am exhausted. I never get enough sleep during the horse shows, and I do not function well in a sleep deprived state. I'll probably unpack and go to bed. I'm so tired!