Friday night around 4pm, it started raining.
I walked my XC course in a downpour. Poor souls tried to ride their horses or unload their trailers in the wet, and slowly our showgrounds turned into a city of drowned rats. Where there were puddles, lakes appeared, and the only upside was that the water complexes were looking more and more inviting as our horses desensitized themselves to wet toes.
This was all fine for the moment, as I smugly enjoyed hiding under the overhang cleaning tack, having already ridden and unpacked. And then I realized that we were warming up for showjumping on grass that was getting slicker by the minute.
And though the next day it had stopped raining, it didn’t get any dryer. So this is pretty much how the warmup went:
And of course I shared my SJ warmup with a couple of folks riding horses that were hellbent at killing us all. They went sideways, they went up, there was head tossing and rearing and cursing, and it was so slick that I couldn’t turn fast to get out of the way.
Jack handled it amazingly well- but as for me, well:
The trainer was wondering what the hell was wrong with me, while my brain was quietly cooking inside my head. I was relieved then when it was time to head over to the ring and leave that hot mess behind us.
Despite all that, our course was actually one of our best to date. Jack is really settling into his role as show horse, and bar a dumb spook turning to the final line, was fairly rideable throughout. For myself, I am finally learning to sit up, but still got a little leany about halfway through, causing Jack to pick up the pace and put in less balanced approaches. #mybad
So, coming in almost 10 seconds under, we survived wrapped up showjumping and then sat in second before cross country.
I like to think I’m a pretty laid back, cheerful sort of person at shows, but when I get in the warmup, WATCH OUT because I will glare with the best of them if you get in my way more than twice. (Once is fine, twice is still kind of okay, but more than that? THREE STRIKES AND YOU’LL GET SERIOUS SIDE EYE.) Haha!
OMG when people are jerks and not respecting the basic warmup etiquette, I call them out. When it’s their ponies being a$$holes, then yes, sideeye abounds!
I have a lot of patience when someone is having trouble with their horse. I get it. I’ve been that person. No one WANTS to be the one causing mayhem in the warmup. It’s more the people who just aren’t paying attention. Or don’t care to.
OMG agree that those not paying attention is way worse! And honestly, I’m used to sharing the warm up with naughty ponies, but I think the stressful part of this particular situation was not being able to avoid/give space to them because of the slick footing and the [very nearby] adjacent warm up.
Ugh, that does sounds so stressful!
Sounds like every event I went to last summer lol awesome round!
OMG. I think it would make me consider not showing if I had to deal with that all the time.
Your illustration of the warm-up gave me anxiety! Good job! You guys are looking super!
Uh, yes! It was absolutely anxiety-provoking!
I’ve literally had nightmares about the warmup ring – add in slick grass and I think I’d be having a total meltdown!
Uh, yeah. It’s the kind of place that, if you weren’t medicated for anxiety before, you certainly will be after. LOL