The ride-a-Test. How did it go? I'll start with the Are You Kidding Me?! (in no particular order):
- Sydney did not, I repeat, did not have a melt down. In fact, we warmed up in a nicely plowed area, adjacent to the dressage court, that had no fence. And we cantered! With no safety fence!!!!!
- I left ALL my riding clothes, boots, helmet, gloves, and Speedy's pad in my car at the barn, which was 35 minutes from the venue. Yep. Really. After unloading both ponies, I opened my trailer door to get Speedy's pad and looked around in a completely baffled state of mind. Where was the pad? And for that matter, where the hell are my clothes and boots? Well, crap. Apparently, (said with one eye brow cocked) somebody (ahem) left everything sitting on the back seat of the car. Did you panic? Nope. I simply walked around and borrowed the most basics items possible. I had worn a decent pair of jeans and a long sleeve t-shirt that coordinated with the fleece vest I was wearing so I borrowed a pair of half chaps and two different helmets. I had a cruddy pair of old Ariat Terrains in the trailer so I popped those on instead of my rubber boots. Nothing like "showing" in jeans and funky footwear!
- Speedy reared several times during the warm up. Speedy reared during the test. Speedy was high as a kite. Sydney was not. Go figure!
- Erica, from Of Academia and Horses, whom I finally got to meet, has to think I am a complete idiot!
- I did not fall off, bail off, or look stupid while riding!
And now The Bad ...
- Speedy G would not soften that neck of his. He was braced through the whole test and refused to stretch over his top line. Being higher than a kite has a way of making one's neck and back stiff.
- Sydney wasn't very soft either. He has an excuse though. He pretty much looked like a giraffe for the entire ride. Although, sneaking in a good here, Judge Mary did give him an 8 for the free walk.
- Speedy G was a complete idiot at the trailer, but I knew he would be. When he's alone, he'll stand there for days on end. With a pal, forget about it.
- Sydney had a tough time concentrating with Speedy G screaming and hollering for him. I am certain that Speedy was telling him horrible things about death and dismemberment or at the very least, things about vaccinations and wormer.
- Judge Mary pointed out that my thumbs need to be UP. Doh!
And finally, there was The Good ...
- Both boys loaded into the trailer as though they had done so hundreds of times together before. They haven't. Not even once. I hadn't yet loaded them both together. This was to be their maiden voyage. I am glad it worked out. They stood at the trailer, albeit on opposites sides, happy companions shooting the breeze. Except for when Speedy took it upon himself to scare the bejesus out of Sydney with his tales of horror!
- I rode both tests error free. I had them memorized and had no trouble riding each movement from memory. Good for me!
- Sydney picked up the canter going both directions on the correct lead and did it fairly softly. He scored a 6 on the right lead canter, our more difficult side, but then earned a 7 to the left with the remark, little more balanced in this direction. Good for him!
- My elbows were bent!
- I met some really nice people.
- I genuinely had fun!
And there you have it: The Good, The Bad, and The Are You Kidding Me?!