There’s a home show at the barn this weekend, on Sunday. I have the day off, have a healthy pony, and had actually tentatively planned on entering as recently as two weeks ago.
As the entry date got closer and closer, I realized I had not strong urge to show. It wasn’t like I was worried or nervous – one of the nice benefits of having a senior horse is the distinctly low or even nonexistant level of fucks I have to give about proving myself. More like I just didn’t feel any fire.
I thought a lot about where we are right now as a partnership. In some ways, we’re better than we ever were. In other ways, we’re worse.
See, taking him back to fundamentals in re-installing his driving aids and confirming his forward tendencies has been really good overall. Without question, he is moving better and more easily and working on forward has untangled some other problems. And I know that when we start to ease off this boot camp the rest of it will still be there to access, because he keeps trying to offer it. (For which he gets praise and thanks but I don’t take him up on the offer, because it’s not what I want to work on right now.)
On the other hand, focusing on forward means that he’s not exactly in a place I want to show off right now. His best moments are betterr than they’ve ever been! But I honestly feel no need to try to bottle them all up to put into the movements of a test. We have enough ~60% scores and third-place ribbons at Training Level. I’d rather go out and either really crush a Training test, or flop at First Level. (Honestly, I’d prefer the latter.)
There’s another home show in the fall that, all appendages crossed, might be a good time to take a swing at First Level. That’s my goal now.
On a purely “small obstacles that could have been overcome but meh” level, I opted to save the $60 entry cost, and have a boatload of yardwork planned around the house this weekend.
So here we are: thinking hard about First Level for the fall. The only reason I am even a tiny bit sad to opt out is that I do like to show support for the barn. It’s usually a pretty full show – my entry won’t make or break it! – but still.
Anyone out there in a similar place, or are you ready and eager to go out and show this season?