It’s been a crazy busy month with my vacation, a trip to Ocala and Thanksgiving, so I haven’t had much time to blog. Now I’m off to California tomorrow for the USEA Convention and for a quick visit to L.A.!
But before that I was able to get Oh So out to the Loch Moy Donation Derby on Sunday.
I was super excited to ride Saturday, but after I fed him his breakfast and went to clean his legs up I realized he’d sprung a shoe! He lives out in a decent amount of mud and hasn’t lost a shoe for a very long time, and it was quite dry, so I was pretty upset.
Luckily the derby ran a second day, so if I could find a farrier to tack it back on I’d be OK.
I spent the day calling about 10 farriers with no luck, and by 4 p.m., I’d resigned myself to the fact that I wouldn’t be going- a great way to cap a pretty horrible year of wasted money and disappointment as far as my riding goals.
But a local farrier came through in the end by some miracle at 5 p.m. and we got it back on!
There was open schooling before each level, but we basically used the time to warm him up on the flat, then popped over a few jumps. He was a little disconcerted by the people in Christmas costumes with bells jingling as the galloped around him!
The course seemed quite big to me in spots for novice, but I guess I’m just out of practice. It was a little weird going from show jumps to cross-country and back again, and I just felt a little rough. I can sometimes fall into my bad habits at shows, and with being so rusty, I didn’t sit upright as much as I could, and I ducked right a bit causing us to miss some leads. He seemed to always be on the wrong lead. I also didn’t keep a consistent rhythm to every jump, but it got better as we went along.
We’re still working on getting his right to left change on the flat, so the one time I asked on course I didn’t get it. He seems to have lost it naturally over time as he’s aged, although it’s always been easier left to right.
In the end, I think he had fun, and we ended up winning by being closest to the optimum time! We got a schooling pass to use at Loch Moy too, which basically meant we won our money back. Yay!
So as I cap off a pretty crappy year of not being able to compete much, I’m really thankful I got to do this and have this little accomplishment; a thing to hold on to until the spring where we can try again once the mud dries up!
I’ll have an extensive blog on my Europe trip soon, but until then, off to California!