Wow! For the first time in SEVEN YEARS I stepped hoof into the competitive dressage arena. And, I did quite well, if I must say so myself.
For my SM (surrogate mom) it was her very first time showing in dressage, so she was petrified. I knew that. Plus, my OM (other mom) was there to watch, call out test instructions, and take pictures so that probably added to SM’s stress a little. But she shouldn’t have worried. My OM was THRILLED to see me gleaming from the grooming efforts of SM, tack shining, tidy braids and good to go.
See what I mean? Gleaming!
We warmed up in an indoor arena with flapping canvas walls. My OM thought I might misbehave, but I knew I had to take care of my SM, so I just chugged around ignoring the scary walls. They said I was being very good.
When it was time to go into the ring and show off what we knew, my SM tightened up, locked herself into one position and stopped breathing. I was worried that she might pass out up there and fall off. But she didn’t. My OM read the test and every time we went by her I heard her say “breathe, breathe” and for a brief moment my SM would relax a bit.
According to the judge (I remember her from YEARS ago! OM’s friend!), I was very steady rhythmically, and those circles that we practiced, and practiced, were very accurate (my SM is an engineer – she should understand tangent points and circles!).
But, I couldn’t allow my SM to be TOO confident so, since she was locked into position and couldn’t do anything about it, I lifted my head and neck into camel-mode (as my OM calls it) and refused to put it down. And, it was a hot and sunny day so why would I want to canter much? Nah. Half a circle is enough, isn’t it? Apparently not, according to the judge! Ooops. My SM will have to remind me about that next time.
All in all it was a good day. We went into the ring four times and did all right. I scored a bath, extra grooming and attention out of the adventure – plus a pretty easy day, truth be told. And, I had a visit from a very proud Mom. She misses me a lot, I know, but she’s happy that I have a great place to live and an attentive SM who continues the tradition of spoiling me rotten.