Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Adult Camp Adventures: MDHT & Pony Club!

Last Friday I wanted to keep the magic of Adult Camp rolling after a great day spent at Windurra. So I got up early to get that big bad bay boy ridden before the heat of the day, then set off in the afternoon to Loch Moy to catch the 1* and 2* show jumping!

Molly Kinnamon and The Diesel Boy were the final to go for Intermediate.
It started off super promising too - when just as I walked across the parking lot I passed Buck Davidson on his way to dressage, and Phillip Dutton coming back from show jumping.

Naturally, I smiled and said hi to both (remembering the friendliness of everyone at Windurra!) - and they were each kinda puzzled, trying to figure out if they should know me or not lol. #creepstar3000 strikes again!!

video of their lovely round here, with just the last one down

Anyway, I made it over to show jumping just in time to catch the very last rounds of the Intermediate - including watching Molly Kinnamon put in a nice effort with her handsome black horse, The Diesel Boy.

It looked like a pretty tricky but also pretty fun course - a far cry from the stuff that's usually set up in that ring when we show haha!

can we say #riggoals?
Since there would be a break in the jumping while they reset the course, I booked it back to dressage to watch Buck finish warming up and ride his test. Tho to my surprise, he was already in the court by the time I got there. Guess the horse didn't need much warm up!

the epic battle between the primal urge to run away from the storm, and the need to be fancy as fuck while doin it lol
Except, just as I arrived ringside, the skies opened and it poured, complete with lightning and thunder. Sigh. Buck kinda looked at the judge in the middle of his test and then.... just left haha. Trotted out of the court, out of the warm up, and around through the parking lot back to the barns.

"and i'm siiiiiiinging in the rain!"
Naturally, he was closely followed by the other horses in the dressage area. While obviously I was disappointed by the weather, it was honestly almost comical watching these very nice horses come zooming out of the arena at high-speed fancy prancing on their way to safety lol.

The storm was intense - but brief. LOTS of rain, then over quickly. Alas with apparently a long line of storms on the radar, show organizers called it for the evening to resume the next morning, rather than risk being shut down by another incoming storm cell.

Which, like, kinda blew since I drove all that way out there and only really saw one full competitor's test - Molly's show jumping above. Oh well.

check out that sky tho! also. this is the same jump (now repainted) that had been immortalized as this blog's header when Izzy sailed over it to finish our last novice back in 2015
I made it worth my while tho by walking the Novice cross country course. This event didn't offer BN, but I want to start adjusting my eye up anyway. Reconnaissance and all that good stuff. Plus I was curious to see just how different the recognized course was from the unrecognized.

Verdict? Honestly not that different. Biggest notable differences were in length (it felt longer, but that could just be me) and in the number of A-B combinations: 3, where I'd only seen 1 on the unrecognized novice courses I've walked there.

pony clubber? or impostor? you decide!
The combinations were all pretty standard tho - a plain old four stride line between two inviting jumps; the entry to the water flagged as A then a coop three strides out of the water as B; and the ditch three strides to another coop type thing. So. Ya know. Pretty reasonable.

And naturally most of the jumps on course were things I'd done before with Izzy. There were maybe three or four elements that looked reeeeeally squicky to me (mostly the stuff with uphill approaches, and a giant brush table ((but emma, horses love brush jumps!))) but mostly? It looked pretty good. The future, yo. Ahhh the future.

dis austen's wine face
Obviously tho there wasn't much use in hanging around show grounds any longer - so I did what any normal person would do: met up at Austen's barn with her and her wine bottle to watch some pony clubbers (and her barn mates) have a jump night.

definitely pony club approved, right Stephanie???
I mean, tail gating is tail gating, right? And pony clubbers are basically the next best thing to 1* show jumpers, right? Right?? 

see, we even had stemware!
So. Ya know. That was fun. Lol.... At least we kinda sorta made good use of ourselves. Two of Austen's barn mates planned on schooling their horses through the jumper rounds too, and Austen got to act as photographer.

does this little pocket rocket remind you of anyone?
I took a couple videos for the riders too, but mostly just watched (and drank lol). In particular, my eye was drawn to this little red dynamo, for maybe obvious reasons lol. Remind you of anyone?

can't forget Pig tho!
All in all, not a terrible way to pass an evening (esp with pizza at the end!). Tho I was sorry to miss out on some upper level spectating. Ah well. Next time!

just a cute barn. nothin to see here, move right on along
As it is tho, adult camp has officially come to a close. Work resumes, pony boot camp continues, and we've still got another full month ahead of us before returning to the competition scene ourselves.

definitely nothing to see here either, damn those boots have seen better days!
And I'm trying to use this time wisely. Not only in schooling the horse - which, actually, is going really well - but also in doing my own due diligence in making sure we're set up for success.

Some of this relates to taking care of equipment and gear maintenance or replacements. And some of it relates to my longer term plans for the horse and his needs.

just the handsome big bad bay boy, sporting his super classy footwear (and shoes, plz for the love of god charlie keep on those shoes!)
Plus, ya know, anything that involves identifying a need for shopping is always pretty fun haha. Latest acquisitions include schooling and show breeches, and new tall boots. And maybe some other stuff too. Ya know. The usual.

Anyway. It's back to reality for now tho - with just the hope and promise of more fun spectating events and whatnot in the future!

What about you - what are your favorite horsey things to do when time is a non-issue, when you've got all the free time in the world? Is it attending big events? Touring facilities like Windurra or the big TB breeding farms in Kentucky? Shopping? Smaller get-togethers at friends' barns? Hardcore riding lessons or clinics for yourself? Or lots of quiet time with your horse? All of the above? Or something else entirely?

31 comments:

  1. I keep saying I've got to go over to Loch Moy sometimes to watch on their big show days, but alas, I never seem to get there :( Bummer you got rained out.

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    1. you should totally go sometime! this was my first time going to loch moy for a big show, but i love the venue for the smaller stuff too. tho it's no fair hill, that's for sure!

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  2. In the summer I love my 'stay-cations'- ride in the morning and then do what I want in the afternoon. I take day trips and such but it's about being at home. Like my husband says our home is also our cottage.

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    1. ha i love that! that's basically how my week unfolded last week, and it was reeeeally refreshing to simultaneously be able to cut loose but still have my own home and routine and all that.

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  3. "looked at the judge and left" LOL. I wish I could have seen all the fancy escape prancing in person. Your photos/gifs/explanation left me in a fit of giggles, I can only imagine how it was IRL.

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    1. lol the escape prancing was very fun to watch! like i would have rather gotten to watch *normal* fancy prancing in the tests.... but this worked out well enough too haha

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  4. I think with all the free time in the world (not that that's been a think lately, lol), I love just spending time with my horses in a low key way. Having a spa day for no reason other than having a fun clean shiny pony. Meandering on the trails with no agenda and no time frame. Even just sitting in their stall and hanging out (I have been known to curl up with my Kindle on a hay pile in the corner of a stall and just chill). Sitting on my glider just listening to them graze.

    Although all of your events sound super fun too! They're just not things I have a ton of access to, out here in the middle of nowhere missouri haha.

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    1. ah yes, but that quiet low key time with horses is so special! one of the things i miss so much about not working at a barn any more is getting to just pause and quietly observe the horses out in the field doing their thing - there's something so peaceful about that!

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  5. The places you ride look so fun! And "Rig-o-licious" is right! That looks like a circus rig.

    Oh and you posted awhile back about a tube-ie fly mask. Well, I purchased one for Jean-Luc and tried it out last night. HE FINALLY calmed his prissy pants down enough to really enjoyed himself - despite the heat. Thanks for the share! I think it's just what we needed. I left it on him over night to get him some relief. . . hopefully it's STILL ON him today, lol.

    Cheers!

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    1. yea that rig was giant! but when you're phillip dutton, that's what you need! and glad the fly mask is working for Jean-Luc! charlie eventually figured out how to take that one off too so now he's going out barefaced bc i don't want to keep buying masks for him to lose

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  6. We live just over an hour from Tryon International Equestrian Center. I absolutely love going to their Saturday Night Lights Grand Prix weekends! And sometimes they have Grand Prix dressage and other disciplines, but the SJ is my favorite. They're hosting WEG next year and I'm going to be in heaven!

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    1. ooooh that definitely sounds like a lot of fun! i'd love to go to WEG one year!

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    2. I just moved from Greenville, SC and I already miss being so close to TIEC!

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    3. it looks like a lovely place, definitely on my bucket list for sure! not sure i'll ever ride there tho

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    4. I'll probably never ride there either. The cost for a weekend H/J show is way too prohibitive for just a couple of jumper classes! But it's fun to go watch the fancy riders do their fancy stuff. And it's sooo spectator friendly, it's unbelievable.

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    5. yea i basically feel that way about the costs of anything recognized lol. i love to watch tho!

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  7. This reminds me of the weeks leading up to the World Show when I was a junior showing AQHA/APHA. We'd (literally) go live with our trainer and be in boot camp - get up, ride, work out, have a few hours off, ride again, crash and have giant horsey sleepover. Repeat. It was exhausting (like the horsey version of Two A Days!), but it definitely whipped us into shape and was so much fun in that way of having your entire life revolve around ponies.

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    1. that sounds like paradise to me! like maybe once you're in that day-in, day-out grind it becomes a little less glamorous.... but i'd love that experience too!

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  8. Oh man. I wish I could have adult pony camp. I feel I should be insanely rich and then I'd just collect ottbs like potato chips and ride and groom and just be with them all day.

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    1. i mean.... that would be nice too. tho i'll settle for taking my first full week off work in over a year to just putter as i see fit too. "adult camp" is a state of mind anyway, right? ;)

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  9. Spectating is such a great way to get acclimated to different heights (as well as sights, sounds). I always pin my gumption and can-do with Ramone being the years I spent spectating the A's and realizing I can do it too.

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    1. definitely. watching ppl do things easily when those things would otherwise seem impossible to me? that's a HUGE mental help haha

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  10. I never understood staycations when I was younger. Now I long for time to just sit and do nothing. I love to volunteer and already have two more events on the books this summer to work and would do more if I could with any time off I can scrape up.

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    1. staycations are the best - and finding that time to take them is so key, but so hard! this was my first time off since.... well. gosh. first real week off? definitely years (plural). first real actual PTO since taking this new job too. it was time! glad you're getting so many opportunities to volunteer too! mine have been limited but i'm hoping to change that soon!

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  11. I have all the free time in the world and I mostly spend it watching Netflix. I am not living it up. I did go watch a David O'Conner clinic last week.

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    1. ooooh i hope you enjoyed it!! i've really enjoyed watching him teach in the past

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  12. I'm so glad my Nalgene bottle is enjoying its extended vacation 😂

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    1. hahaha it's a poor substitute for you, but we'll take what we can get! :)

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  13. That looks like such a fun time!!

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