Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The delights of dressage

The Grey Mare and I have a new hobby.

No, not her dropping me in the long grass when birds fly out of it unexpectedly (which has happened twice in the last month, the first of which necessitated me hobbling around with a stick for two days)... but dressage.

Dressage is something I have thought for some years that the Grey Mare should be able to do. She has resisted. However, we entered a competition and with grim determination (on my behalf) we practised. And we practised and we practised.

In the week or so leading up to our debut, I thought we had just about got it. I thought we might not make such fools of ourselves after all.

The day dawned, I was up at 5.30am, industriously plaiting her mane and tail and polishing her to perfection. She did, if I say so myself, look rather splendid. However, that is where the splendidness stopped.

Having not competed for four years, going away to the competition was just a wee bit too exciting. New place, new horses, and the horror of the white boards - and flowers - around the arena were all a bit too much.

The lovely soft dressage horseness we had almost achieved at home went out of the window and my grim determination returned - to complete the test. Which we did, with a couple of spooks, and a step or two outside of the dreaded white boards when she thought she was going to be able to escape.

However, it has now filled me with a desire to do it again - and keep doing it again until she performs away from home as well as I know she is capable of doing.


Hannah Velten said...

Tough business this dressage lark. Used to do it when I was in Pony Club and Riding Club (under duress or because I was doing eventing), but although my ponies/horses were pretty good it's not the most exciting thing to do. However, now my Mum is a dressage judge and I write for her sometimes I can see the real skill in dressage and when it's done well it is beautiful to watch. Good luck with the next outing - perseverence...

Winchester whisperer said...

Welcome back!

Arthur Clewley said...

even Anky Van Grunsven had a first time M&M. I have missed you by the way so lovely to see you back, even if it's just briefly and hope all is well with you

Mutterings and Meanderings said...

Hannah it certainly is tough - and I do intend to keep at it. I am bloody minded!

Thank you WW.

Arthur, how on earth do you know about Anky? I am impressed!

Gill said...

I don't understand any of this horsey stuff but I know that if you find something that you enjoy and find it interesting and challenging then you should keep at it.

Hadriana's Treasures said...

Good luck with the dressage. Sounds flippin' tough! Glad you feel like blogging again. Hope to hear of more equine exploits in the future.

ziggi said...

your back! Goody!
But dressage, rather you than me! We're far too undisciplined round here :)
Good luck though, I shall look forward to hearing how it goes. Hope GM is keeping sound and well, and you of course.

Blossomcottage said...

Of course she is capable of doing she is "Grey" the very best of horses!
my son used to call dressage the "drainage phase" and to ensure that he was smiling when he entered the arena and still smiling when he reached X I would say to him as he went away to warm up around the outside
"What is the difference between snowmen and snow women"
At the age of 9 he found it very difficult not to grin from ear to ear at the thought of "Snow Balls"
Love you Grey.