Tuesday, November 12, 2013


This is a "Confessions" blog so sometimes I have to get real... you know tell the dirty truth even if it doesn't seem right.  So here goes - When it comes to horses, I am a voyeur.

You see, I like to watch horses doing things, special things... things that I am incapable of.  I lust after those big butted, body wiggling dressage horses.  And I find myself out of breath when a 3 or 4 star horse body tightens, muscles contract and then releases its power over a fence disappearing into the drop below.  Yes, I like to watch.

Tonight was The Birthday Ride - an annual event where my trainer rides Sugar and entertains my lust of a good dressage horse.   Historically, the BD Ride has taken all forms to the delight of this lover of all things horse.  The memories of the best still dazzle:
Eventing Trainer's Pro Ride 2009

  • 2010 was the Year of the Piaffe  where I watched in awe at the process used to develop the piaffe.  It was equestrian eye candy...  half steps, collection, more half steps, collection, a tactful tap with the whip until a true moment of real piaffe  I actually had tears in my eyes. 

  • 2011 was all about lengthenings with the gathering of power, the slight rocking back on her hind end and then the thrust forward floating above the ground.... Ahhhhhhh - AWESOME!
Used with permission

  • 2008 was the Battle of the Angry Mare BD Ride (which my Dressage Trainer would rather me not mention). This was the year that Sug's evil twin Saccharine spent a fair time visiting.  No, not the diva Mariah Carey - the EVIL TWIN.  I ended the season being dramatically dumped 12 strides away from the closest jump (hay bales) as Saccharine attempted to run back to her then lover W. 
    • This BD Ride was epic.  Saccharine had ruled the Amateur World far too long and she showed up to take on the Pro. Without too much detail, my Dressage Trainer won a very long battle for Angry Mare dominance.  The timing was perfect - best BD Ride evah!

Tonight's ride was priceless!  I've been struggling with Sugar's soundness and doubting whether or not I was doing right by her.  While I wanted canter pirouettes and perhaps a levade or two, I (we) got exactly what we needed.

Da Boys!  What would be a BD without them.
Sug's body was stiff, had difficulty moving laterally and was on her forehand.  Our Dressage Trainer with impeccable position moved Sug's body using transitions, lateral movements, half halts while pushing and collecting to move her body, even out her stride to loosen and lighten.  It was work coupled with magic.

What did I get from this BD Ride?  Eye Candy? ALWAYS!  I saw what I feel and I watched someone work to get the release.  She was intense, tactful and accomplished something before a break.  She asked, rewarded the correct response yet demanded more and then, rewarded.   Sugar's ears were soft, yielding to her guidance - this was a horse happy with the work.  I even think she was a bit proud of herself.  Now I have the visual needed to make us a better team.

Happy Birthday to me!


lainey said...

You have an endearing capacity to make us all feel worthy and accomplished. Thank you and HAPPY BIRTHDAY week..month…etc :-)

Tracy said...

Happy birthday! I too enjoy watching those more capable ride -- especially on my horse!

Melissa-ParadigmFarms said...

First of all Happy Birthday!!! Secondly, I love your ritual of the birthday ride - what was the inspiration to start this tradition? It is awesome!

Suzanne said...

Melissa, as I weaned off of having a trainer compete Sugar, I missed seeing her go... Hence, the annual BD ride is all about watching her go as a present to me. Makes me happy!