Enter at A, Working Trot, halt, wait what?

Yes, you read correctly. I did indeed make a return to the dressage ring after about 8 years, even though we are (now) less than a week away from Opening Meet, and on Bedford, no less. We went out to Bay of Plenty Stables in Washington, GA for their Fall Combined Training Event/Show, which proved to be a low key way to do something a little different and a lot fun.

Now, before ya'll start thinking we were out there galloping around some Novice/Training/Prelim course at a recognized Horse Trial, we were most definitely not doing so. I think the fastest we went was a mild canter during our stadium/XC round when Bedford decided he wanted to attack the little 2' coop that they had out there....what a fox hunter! The dressage test was Intro B, and we schooled it exactly one time, in a snaffle bit (because rules). A snaffle would be a challenge normally for us, since his bit of choice is a low ported kimberwicke or a two ring elevator (depending on what we're doing) so that also factored into the decision to keep it to walk/trot in the dressage ring, in addition to Bedford's checkered past of show ring burnout.

Thankfully the copious amounts of rain that we had the day before dried up, and while the ring and grounds were a big soggy, and we were running a little late, after a quick warmup, we headed straight into the ring and turned in an average to slightly above average in some areas, which was enough to get us a 60%.

Stadium/XC was just on faults alone, and while we had some moments of concern (apparently plain white poles on a 18" vertical are THE SCARIEST THING EVER) and a blonde moment or two on my part where I might have looked blindly around for my next fence, it was half decent, and I am so, so proud of Bedford for not having any meltdowns or hissy fits. Oh, and we won our division (Amoeba/Adult), which shocked me, and I spent the rest of yesterday just thrilled to bits because I was so proud of how Bedford and I did. I might add, I had the best show groom and support system ever, in the form of my boyfriend Michael, who bravely agreed to come with, even after the last time he agreed to do so it was an 8 hour day. Not only did he help clean off the copious amounts of mud that layered itself on my boots instantaneously, but I think he and Bedford even formed a semi-alliance of shared brotherhood...but that's to be determined.

So, with this schooling show under our belts, it's on to Opening Meet, this Saturday!


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