You guys, we are fabulous. Seriously, Nilla and I are so good at dressage, you’re gonna be jealous. I dunno if you can even handle this.
Since I know you need time to brace yourself for our majesty, let’s back up a bit. This weekend my husband and I went to the Autumn Horse Trials at Eventful Acres. There was quite a bit of drama in signing up for this event, but it all got sorted out in the end. Unfortunately, my husband actually had to work on Friday so I had to drive the horses up by myself. It was a long, but traffic-free drive and when I arrived, I was greeted with the best perk.
Because they have to fit a lot of people in, the owner comes around and tells you exactly where to park. When he pulled up, he asked how my back up skills were and I said basically nonexistant, so he parked my trailer for me. I actually could have done it myself as this entire area was empty when I arrived, but I’m happy to get help if it’s offered. I proceeded to watch him park a lot of other people’s trailers all day.
Due to traffic, my husband didn’t arrive until 7. With sunset at 7:10, we had only a little bit of time to ride before it got dark, which was unfortunate as I hadn’t ridden Nilla since Wednesday and we could have used more time.
Saturday morning I gave myself a lot of time to warm up. Well, it was a lot of time for me, so like 30 minutes. Warm up started really well with me forgetting to take Nilla’s hock boots off and being called over by the ring steward. Thanks husband/groom for noticing that. Anyway, Nilla was absolutely in a mood. I think the warm up area being a field that is part of the cross country course might have been contributing as she was on fire.
She tried to bolt a few times, insisted on bucking during canter departs and at one point decided she could not possible canter on the left lead. The steward asked if I could go early as one of the people before me had showed up really late and needed some more warm up time. Unfortunately, I really needed to at least establish that left lead existed before I could go. I did eventually get that corrected, but the competitor who needed more time had just entered the ring at that point.
Unfortunately, this person seemed to be doing BN A instead of BN B and went off course right away. The judge corrected her, she started again and went off course again because she must not have had BN B memorized. So a caller was found and that caller then forgot to tell her to canter between F and A so she got an off course ding again. OMG. I felt sooo bad for her. It’s bad enough to go off course, but to have your caller mess you up? That really sucks. They looked really good when they weren’t going off course.
My husband, who had been watching Nilla’s antics, told me at least you can place ahead of that person. And I was like, “actually… going off course only gets you 2 faults; how many do you think I’ll lose for bucking?”
Given the antics during warm-up, I was actually pretty impressed with the non canter parts of our test. Nilla was relaxed (for her) and not going a million miles per hour. After watching the video from Camelot, I was really trying to concentrate on going slower at the trot.
I felt like it was pretty good. We got two 7s and a 7.5 for our trot work. And then we went to canter. Now brace yourselves readers, because this is the majesty you’ve been waiting for:
This is possibly my favorite picture of us doing dressage ever. No seriously, I cannot stop laughing looking at this. It has everything: there’s a giant flopping mule tongue, WTF are my hands even doing, her ears are literally flopping with the velocity of the head shaking, the amount of downhill is enough to give a western pleasure horse competition, and the tail. I’m pretty sure this picture sums up dressage for me and Nilla.
My husband missed a shot of the outright buck that proceeded this, but you can see the attitude. I feel like 4.5 might actually have been too generous. But I suppose it was a schooling show. Canter in the other direction was marginally better but it certainly wasn’t great. For the second depart I did get my new favorite comment of “humping in depart.”
Somehow I managed to get a 6.5 for the free walk. My husband’s comment was “I think her head actually went up during free walk.” I agreed with him, but I’m not going to file a protest with the judge, so I’ll take it.
I thought our halt was better than Camelot, but it still wasn’t good. She just did not want to stand still. Our final score was 38, which put us tied for 4th out of 6. The 6th person scratched (the one with all the off course errors) so tied for 4th was really just tied for last. Whatever, dressage was seriously the least of my concerns. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post about my true concerns.
At least the scribe liked Nilla:
Sounds like you made the best of the situation!
That is generally how dressage goes for us.
That photo is awesome. “F-this dressage crap!”
But I am seriously envious of you and Nilla because of all the other cool stuff you do so it’s okay that you are not good at that one thing. 😀
Nilla truly hates dressage and I don’t like it much either, but its a necessary evil.
I adore that picture. It needs blown up and framed. You just made my tuesday a happy one (not because I am laughing at your frustration, but because that picture is amazing)
Don’t worry, you’re laughing with me, not at me.
Those photos are awesome! Sorry she was feeling opinionated that day, but looks like you guys made the best of it! Never a dull moment with her!
There is no such thing as a dull moment with the Nilla mule.
Ha omg I hope you frame that picture and put it right next to the awesome sweet one of you hugging her after stadium at Camelot!!!
I don’t have any framed pictures of me. But if I did, this would be up there with them.
LOL @ cute mule. love the scribe descriptions. one time i had one that said “really pretty braids” i wanted ot be like THANKS BRO
the gif is life <3 go helicopter tail.
She does like to use her tail as a propeller.
That photo is everything!
I think I need to have it framed.
Ha! Cute mule, the best Color of Horse description I have ever seen.
I love it.
She IS a cute mule! The cutest mule! The cutest, tongue-flapping, head shaking creature around.
Nilla, the Most Majestic Queen of the Mules!
She would accept this title.
Oh Nilla Cute Mule. Why must you torture your mother? My theory is that she missed her Minions browband…
She is a minion.
That gif is amazing. Hahaa.
That’s what we’re here for…
She’s a cute, humpy mule! Hahaha
Cute is as cute does.
I literally LOLed at the canter picture. Such majesty for sure. At least you can laugh at some of the comments–because if you don’t laugh you’ll cry. 😉
Seriously. I would be a depressed wreck if I couldn’t laugh at myself.
Your sense of humor over the situation gets a blue ribbon for sure!
I honestly just don’t take myself that seriously. And if I did, I’d be crying. It’s more fun to be laughing.
She is a cute mule! And I seriously love that comment too
I’ll have to have the comment inscribed on the picture when I frame it.
Oh wow. Now I sort of want a mule just so I can get pictures like that. Amazing!
The ears just make it so much better.
Oh Nilla…. Glad you can keep a sense of humor about things! You both look great though!
So great we’re going pro any day now.
That picture is hilarious! And I love your jacket!
Thanks. I love it too and I got it on sale so it was cheap.