Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Mane Event 2010

It was a great time! I'm so glad I decided to go even though I was by myself.

When we first got there I was nervous and so was Brigit. There was so much going on. We had a chance to do a quick warm up in the main ring before they harrowed and got the demonstrations going. Brigit was pretty scared of the crowd, there was SO many people. And then there was the scary banners on the rails of the arena, those might jump out and eat us too. AND there was cows in a pen along the one side of the arena, also scary! We only got a few minutes in there and then went over to the other ring to continue our warm up ring. I was worried after that, I wasn't sure what was going to happen when we went back in there by ourself, sidesaddle.

We swapped to the sidesaddle and toured around the warmup ring for awhile. I wish we'd gotten some pictures of all of the people/horses in the warmup together. There was miniature horses, donkeys, mules, fresians, drafts, ponies and a whole bunch of carts/wagons. I thought for sure Brigit was going to freak out at the carts and the donkeys but she did so well! I was super impressed. My old mare would have been outta there like a ferarri in reverse!

I got lots of funny looks when I was wandering around with one tall boot and one paddock boot on. LOL Kinda looked like I got dressed in the dark.

As did this outfit! Lucky green socks, cowboy boots, navy breeches and my nice coat (forgot to bring a practical one!). Not to worry, I only wore this while I was grooming/tacking up. So then I went and got dressed and brought my habit over to the ring. I can't seem to gracefully mount (even with help) with all of it on so I usually get on and then get "dressed" on the horse. Here's the classic one tall boot, one paddock boot look prior to getting dressed. My wonderful boyfriend (/groom/boot shiner/runner etc) standing by. I believe after this picture was taken I bailed off. I didn't realize that the draft horses went right after me, so when I saw the 6 horse draft team coming out way and Brigit started to get all googly eyed I decided I was better off on the ground! LOL That was the only thing that caused her to really spook.

Then we got dressed and waited for our turn to go in. And then it was our turn! Off we go, here goes nothing! I was most worried about her spooking due to applause, the stands were PACKED.

Here's some trotting. All of the action shots are pretty blurry, my camera really didn't like taking pictures indoors with the lights/dust etc.
And some cantering..

There you have it! We talked to the event photographer before we left to see if she might have any photos of us and she said she'd send them to me. I'm hoping she got some good ones!

Oh and here's a video of us cantering. We managed to get TWO flying lead changes from the right lead to the left lead using just my cane. It was pretty neat, we got applause for both of them.

Here's the link to the youtube version if you'd like to see it a bit bigger.

I was so thrilled when we left the ring. Brigit was great, so much better than I had expected from the normally spooky mare. It was fun to get all dressed up and show off what we'd been practicing. I think our sidesaddle debut went great!


  1. Sounds like fun. Hey, at least you recognised you looked goofy at the time. When I think back on some of the funky "off duty" outfits I wore at shows when I was younger I realise I looked like a total hick. And I would have thought one tall boot, one jod would have looked sooooOoooo cool!
    I would have had such a flippy stomach I doubt I would have finished the drive in, much less survived the warm up ring.

  2. Wow! What a weekend! And, it all went so well. There is nothing worse than the first time and I bet she will never be as tense again. Wonderful. Both you and she look so graceful and in contol.

  3. Thanks guys! It was really fun, I'm glad I went. I was a little nervous about going by myself at first but it was definitely worth it!
    I really really hope I can get some better pictures!