Of course, Faith will be sitting this one out! Hopefully one day she'll be coming with us. Knowing my luck, when the time comes she will probably refuse to load onto the trailer. Of course I can't really blame her for not wanting to leave here. :-)
As many of you know, I'm a trainer and instructor by profession. Each year, my students and I travel all over New England to compete at shows from May through September. We normally attend about a dozen shows, as well as a few state fairs. This coming weekend is our first show of the season - God help me...
Normally, I am totally pumped and ready for the season to begin. After a long, cold winter, I'm excited to begin conditioning horses, body clip them, and head to the showgrounds. This year, not so much. Up until February, my life was easy and relaxed. Winter is our quiet season here - the only quiet one - and it was going fairly smoothly. I was waiting for the snow to melt and the horses to begin shedding their winter fuzziness. Shows were on the horizon and I couldn't wait to hook the trailer up and hit the road.
Then a certain mare you may have heard about came around and turned it upside down. For the better, of course. I'm grateful that she came into my life - granted, I wish it was under better circumstances - but I still don't think I have caught up on all of the lost sleep yet! Show season has arrived in a flash and I feel totally unprepared.
Today it officially began. Myself and about ten of my students loaded up the trucks and headed to the Deerfield Fairgrounds to set up our stalls. We cleaned out the barn, put fluffy shavings down in each stall, set up our tack room and dressing room, and hung our drapes. Tomorrow morning I'll begin making trips to the showgrounds with show horses. After school gets out, students will arrive for their workouts, followed by baths, hoof sanding, tack cleaning and final preparations.
The horses will be staying at the show grounds, but I'll be commuting back and forth each day. I still do not feel 100% comfortable with leaving Faith at home overnight by herself, plus I really like sleeping in my own bed. Who doesn't?!
Even though I think I need a few more weeks to prepare, I am really looking forward to this show season. Our horses and kids have been working very hard in their lessons and I think that our farm is going to have an amazing year ahead of us. We have quite a few promising beginner riders joining our team of seasoned competitors.
I also enjoy showing, although I'm usually too busy coaching to get my own classes in. I have a cute black and white pinto Half-Arabian mare that I have shown over the past few years. She's only 15 hands tall, but is hooky, elegant and a big mover. However, she isn't the easiest horse to keep between your legs; she's forward and can easily get hot. But she's a blast to ride! Here she is with me last year winning the Hunter Pleasure Championship:
Her name around the barn is "Cori", but her registered name is "SB Cookies N Cream". A cute name if she were a kids' horse, but not for a professional adult! Not at all. :-)
The last time I rode her was February 1st, the day before we picked Faith up. One of my students has been schooling Cori over the past few months for me, since Faith takes up most of my free time. I was planning on bringing her out today, but the farrier showed up for a repair, so my plans had to change. More than likely, the next time I'll be on Cori's back will be during our warm-up before her class.
Friday at 10:00am the show begins. I am in one of the first riding classes. Lucky me.