Tuesday, May 3, 2016

At the Horse Show

The past two weekends I was at the Senator Bob Martin Ag Center in Williamston, NC for horse shows as a vendor -  selling and signing books. These events were especially fun as I am originally from Plymouth, just a hop and skip from Williamston. I saw some old friends, some former riding students who have grown up and now have children of their own riding and loving horses. It was like a home-coming.
NENC District 4-H Horse Show

I haven’t been to a horse show in several years, but at the Ag Center shows it felt just like old times – parents and trainers on the rail watching the young riders and their horses, the announcer calling out instructions, the clunk, clunking of boots on the concrete floor of the walk-way, horses whinnying, and the smell of leather from the tack vendor’s booth. I found I still know if a rider is posting on the correct diagonal in a equitation class and if horses are cantering on the correct leads. I stifled the urge to comment when a rider was sitting too far forward or didn’t have their legs under them. I didn’t say a word about some of the western horses going at a four-beat instead of three-beat in the lope and those that were carrying their heads with the polls lower than their withers. It was reassuring to know I haven’t gotten so old, or been away from the business so long, that I still notice these things. It was like I'd never gotten away from being an instructor/trainer.

I don't really miss it: being at the horse show with students and their horses. I like being a book vendor, free of the hard work and nerve-racking pressure much better. But. . .
Makayla showing me her favorite horse.

Jessica, my grand daughter and my last of my kids to show her horse, joined me with her husband and two little ones at the show two weekends ago. Her little girl, Makayla, who is four, was on the edge of her seat watching the horses go around. Maybe I'll be on the rail again one day watching her ride in the horse show. No, I'll leave the rail-standing to her mama. I'll watch from the bleachers.

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