Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Writing goals in concrete and plans in sand

The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . .

(Though most people associate the expression with the 1936 John Steinbeck novel Of Mice and Men, it actually originated in a 1786 poem by Robert Burns entitled To a Mouse which he wrote as an apology after turning up the mouse’s nest accidentally while ploughing a field)

Literature lesson aside, the expression stands true.

It’s been a pre-season of foiled plans and wallet hemorrhage. My credit card is still licking its wounds and my checkbook is asking about an exit strategy.

In my defense, it was a good plan: go to Full Gallop, slay the PT division, move back up to Prelim at Southern Pines, collect the prize money (as in $4 ribbon you can basically buy anywhere). What actually happened was a teensy bit different. Coby was so keen to be done with the Winter respite that he did the equivalent of a frat house brawl the entire show.

He bucked in the dressage test. He bucked in stadium. He bucked, ran like his tail was on fire, bucked some more, ran with the tail-o-fire some more, buck, run, buck, run . . . on XC. In HIS defense, he just felt too darned good to be good. That’s why I love him.

Anywho, seemed a little premature to go Prelim at SP when we clearly had some more prep to do so we are now in the OT division.

That’s okay, Otie had all the prep he needed to make his debut (Open Novice). WRONG.

May I present failed plan numero dos: Step 1 - final XC school at the Horse Park (cancelled for rain). Step 2 - Novice CT (see snowy video below, jumping was cancelled). Step 3 - Novice unrecognized HT at Running Start (postponed for weather, couldn’t go).

The 2nd half of the snowy test is below (camera malfunction / operator error did not capture the 1st half). It was so cold the reins were crunchy and I had icicles for fingers. For only his 2nd time performing in the sandbox I think he did just fine.

Cancellations aside, I’ve decided to take him to the show anyway since it’s 2 miles away, paid for and he will at least get to have a trip down centerline. Maybe jump the stadium course, and maybe proceed to XC if it looks reasonable when I walk it. If anything looks like it’s beyond his education / comfort zone then it will just be one expensive dressage test. On the bright side, at least he’ll get his first chance to experience the electricity of a big show environment.

He’s just hoping they don’t cancel his Spring Break to make up the teacher workdays.



  1. Oh man, that snow is no joke! We complain about the heat here, but I'm not sure I could handle that.

  2. Hahaha! You aren't kidding! We are not accustomed to snow in this part of North Carolina, it always catches us off guard.