Monday, October 27, 2008

The Last Local Show of the Year

The last local show of the year was this weekend. I was so excited, especially because I had plans to enter the costume contest, which I know I've detailed in other posts. Stella and I had a really great show.
We started out in showmanship, which I normally suck at. I was also the only English person in the class (Usually, everyone there does it in western attire, but I almost always do it English, and occasionally another person pops up and does it English too.). The pattern wasn't that hard, really. It, set up, walk to the second cone in a straight line, turn and trot a half-circle around the third cone, halt, 360-turn, walk to the judge, set up. I know that's difficult to understand (at least for me) without a drawing, but it was kind of a right-angle pattern. Yeah. 
The sand was super deep and I could hardly get Stella to trot.  It was a decent pattern, though, and I was very happy with our go. We actually got 3rd in the class, which was amazing. I'm one of the youngest in that class (It's 13 and up, but I still think I was the youngest one, as Mindy didn't even do showmanship.), and there's some amazing competition in showmanship at this particular show. Stella and I both looked kind of nasty too.  My boots still hadn't been cleaned from State, my coat had grey hairs and dust all over it, my glove has a huge hole on the thumb, Stella's forelock looked ugly and crinkled (I just banded instead of braiding.), and I didn't even put hoof black on Stella's hooves. Oh well. I think the judge just likes Stella a whole lot.  This is the third time in a row that this judge has judged us at local shows.
We had a great time in the costume class. I had to change clothes immediately after showmanship--khaki pants, tennis shoes, t-shirt, hunt coat.  I had to take out my hair thing and put my hair into some funny kind of bun. Stella had to get a cloth "bandage" duct-taped to her butt, and I had to get her gown on her. I was going to give myself a little stubble with some face paint that I had, but it didn't work out very well and I ended up washing it off at the spigot near the mini ring. Of course, I had to have my cane and stethoscope too. Then, Stella and I went down to the ring for the class. 
A group of small children came up to me and said "Oh, it's a doctor and a patient!" I didn't bother correcting them or anyone else who simply said that I was a doctor. One woman, however, saw us as I was practicing with my cane. She had a really sudden look of excitement on her face, and I'm assuming that she was the only person who actually got it without an explanation. She made me really happy :)
In the class, I realized that I was definitely the oldest one, aside from leaders and sidewalkers. There were some really adorable costumes. Our vet's husband put devil horns and red garland on their horse and dressed their young daughter in an angel costume. The husband rode the horse with the daughter in front of him, and it was so cute. There was also a little girl with a palomino mini pony.  She wrapped his tail in tan vetwrap with tan faux fur at the end of the tail and as a lion's mane on the pony. The girl was dressed like Dorothy and was even carrying a small dog. It was absolutely adorable! There was also a bookworm and librarian, a bumblebee and flower, a native American and paint pony (That was Ellie, from our 4-H. She rode for the rest of the day with warpaint on her pony. It was cute.), a headless horseman, a snowstorm and a kid in a winter jacket, and some other cute costumes. 
I ended up taking out my prescription bottle during the class and sharing some dinner mints with Stella. I ate some, too. Stella thought they were great and wouldn't stop nosing me for them. 
Ultimately, I don't think the judge got why I was carrying a cane. She knew I was a doctor, but she didn't know that I was House. That's terribly sad, don't you think? I had fun, though, and Stella certainly had fun eating all my "Vicodin." And a tip for anyone who might want to carry a cane while leading a horse: practice, practice, practice.  I assumed that it would be easy to stay on the same leg while leading Stella, but I kept switching for some reason.  I can do it perfectly when I'm walking alone, but it didn't work well while I was with her.  I really, really had to focus on keeping with my right leg. We got honorable mention in this class, so they gave me a 6th place ribbon.
After the costume class, I had to rush even more to get ready for riding. Our first class was the Hunter Go-As-You-Please. Stella was really calm in this class, but I chose to trot instead of canter. She's better at behaving when we trot. We came out of that class with first. 
Hunter Equitation wasn't so good. Stella behaved herself, but...well, they did keyhole in the ring before the pleasure division. They left the chalk ring on the ground and it scared Stella. While we were schooling, I actually rode Stella through the opening and into the keyhole ring, but she absolutely refused to cross over the chalk line. I laughed at her and had to bring her out through the opening. In the equitation class, I inadvertently tried to canter her through the chalk lines. She came to a screeching halt, did a dirty duck-and-turn, and cantered toward the center of the ring. My butt stayed in the saddle, but my upper body got way left behind and I got kind of uncentered. It was right in front of the judge, too. Oh well. I doubt I would've placed in that class anyway. It looked like she was placing the forward-seat riders, especially since Mindy didn't place either. 
Hunter Under Saddle, in my opinion, wasn't a very good class. I didn't think it was a good ride for me at all, but Stella was well-behaved. We got 2nd place in this class. 
I had a whole lot of fun, and I was really sad when I had to leave Stella behind. I could only go to the show if Larry agreed to take care of Stella and take her home for me. I always miss the horses and everyone at the barn when I'm not there. 
Pre-Turkey is the next show, but Angie, our vet, hinted that she might be able to take Stella and me to a clinic that weekend. She said that it was all about learning to control the body and that it was especially helpful for people like me. I don't know what I'll do. My mom told me that Larry already heard about it and thinks that it'd be a good idea, but I really want to do both. I could always go to the Turkey circuit show, if Larry decides to go. I wouldn't mind skipping the usual torment of Thanksgiving (Yeah, I'm a vegetarian. Get over it, people.) for a horse show. I guess I'll figure it out.

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