Somewhere Somehow: CDRC Dressage Recap!

To start, this was a long HOT weekend for all of us- ponies, riders, show volunteers, trainers and judges. Hats off to them for putting on a lovely show with grace and good cheer! We came up on Saturday and I was in kind of a frenzy in the morning, as we saw there were reports of traffic accidents, and I had my dog with me for the whole day, it was hot, I was feeling nervous…ARGH.

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Better scores and weather, but hot, long and dehydrated?!

Anyways, I got to the barn WAY too early, and shared an ice cream for breakfast with my friend who was also riding in the show. Gidget was annoying but manageable.

We loaded up (early) and got to the show without incident, thank god. But at the show, my friend was riding early, and I was just…sitting around with Oats in the sun. Not a good combination for us. I mounted up, and then hopped off, mounted up AGAIN only to find that they had slotted in even more riders before me, and then I got back on AGAIN and just…It wasn’t a recipe for success. Oats was hot and angsty and stressed, he had to pee but wasn’t!(??) and wasn’t drinking either. Not a winning combination. I also managed to foist my dog off on another rider, who babysat Gidget for me for the whole long, hot day. PHEW!! Stress city guys?!

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From last time. It was still really windy! 

Our first test felt distracted and I prepared him very poorly for it. OH well…The second test rode much better (it felt like to me?) but Oats had an opinion and tossed in a buck, and for every downward transition within the gait (extended canter to working canter) he tried to trot. = success???

I was a bit concerned about him, with the not-drinking, acting strangely and stressed and just blahhhh ‘aura’ about him. He basically fell into the trailer! I asked my friends to keep an eye on him when he got home, to see how he was acting. He was going fine, had a BIG pee (I knew he had to go!!), drank water and went into his house to sleep. He didn’t even come out to play with his buddies. I learned some important lessons about this day, and I was careful on Sunday to make sure he had access to water at all times, including in the warm-up ring (and he drank successfully on Sunday!). 

Our tests were scored well but strangely- I really felt like he rode the second test much better, but it was scored at 65% (first level 3) and the first one was at 70% (yes!! but also…it didn’t feel as good?). Odd!? 

Anyways, I was just glad he felt SO much better on the second day, recap to come tomorrow…Stay tuned!

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Take yourself with you: Crazy weekend recap~

So yeah this weekend…Wow. I am SO TIRED right now.

And this is with taking Monday off~ Yikes!

We kicked things off with a UVic Young Alumni music bingo event at Moon Under Water brewery. It was actually really fun, and I had a blast listening to all these hits from the ’80s to ’90s. There was free food (and lots of it, and it was great!) and a good atmosphere. We didn’t win at bingo but had a nice time and the night flew by.

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It was colder this year but at least it wasn’t raining!

Saturday I went riding (it was ok) and then we went to Phillips’ Backyard for Hopoxia- and we had a blast! Tried some really cool beers, Tod Creek Cider was there with a raspberry-infused cider. We walked home and took it easy, because the next morning was the MEC half-marathon! I will write about that in a separate post, but it went really well for a quite challenging and hard race.

After the race, we went riding- and I rode in the indoor because the footing was pretty deep/chewed up in the outdoor AND Oats was a total looney tunes- spooking, high alert and bolting across the outdoor when a kid was walking along the fence line. Sheeesh…

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He was ok in the indoor, which was good because we then had to get home and get ready for Ian’s dad’s birthday BBQ! Ian bbq’d some great burgers for all of us (his mom, dad, and sister) and pork tenderloin, and we listened to music and hung out on the patio. It was really nice and for once I wasn’t frozen solid!

I ate way too much, adding to my general sluggy feeling of eating/drinking way way too much this entire weekend. I went to bed pretty early as I was feeling totally wiped after the race, riding and hosting the BBQ.

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We saw a building being demolished!

And that was good, because on Monday I got up and had a riding lesson! It went really well, and we practiced releasing tension. It was a nice ride and for once I didn’t feel stressed or anxious. Just lovely! I ended up waterproofing some blankets and I’m sure I inhaled too much silicone spray, because I had a nasty headache for the rest of the day.

But my ‘weekend’ wasn’t over yet! We had the Stars concert at (WAY TOO LATE) as it turns out…they didn’t hit the stage until 10pm! I didn’t get to bed until almost midnight. Boy am I paying for it today, I feel like total shit. But, the band was amazing, and I loved seeing them again- just a great energy and the lead singer- Torquil Campbell- was on fire! He rocked!!

But yes. so tired. So very tired.

Run/ride/PARTY!!

So, work has been insane this week (what else is new? eye rolls…) so I haven’t had a spare second to update. However, the weekend was super jam-packed with a lot of great things.

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Not quite so classy this time.

I ran close to 20k with my husband (my Garmin F10 was not working that well, so it started later into my run, hence the ‘close to’). It was a solid run. I don’t often feel that way –usually my long runs are horrible struggles, where I second guess my ability every step of the way, and feel tired at 4k. I still felt like I had been running forever at 4k, but then magically at like 17k, I felt like, hey no problem guys- I can do this!

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I got this, long run! 

We finished our run and drove home for lunch. I finished lunch and then zipped off to the barn to get in a quick ride, because I had a beer fest to attend at 3pm!

Oats was good, it was a VERY fast ride and we did a few trot-canter transitions: our homework as per Karen Brain from my last dressage lesson. We still suck at them but oh well. I then got home, changed, and we zipped out to Phillips annual Hopoxia! We had a blast! And those mini samples are deadly.

Long story short, we drank too much. Wow! Good thing we were walking, so we walked there and basically staggered home. Eeeek. Luckily my husband has a sixth-sense for when things are ready to go seriously sideways for us–though he does catch it when we are already somewhat inebriated- and he suggested we leave. Good idea!

We staggered home, at like 7pm. Whoops!

And that was it for the night for me. I am super glad my day was extremely productive, because my evening consisted of feeling too out of it to even watch tv!

Haha, I guess you have to get silly sometimes, or life is no fun. Though I gotta say my ride the next day, with a slight hangover, was really NO fun. Ugh.

Oh and who do I complain to about the weather? It freaking SUCKS. It is freezing outside. It has been blasting wind and/or raining every single day. It is also 9 deg right now- in June??

Thanksgiving weekend recap: The fire inside.

Peaceful fall

Peaceful fall

So, when I last left, I was practically running out the door to get away from work and was desperate for a weekend, any weekend, so long as it long!!

No sooner was I relaxing into my weekend (hard-won) on a sleepy Saturday morning when I woke up suddenly and unpleasantly with a horrible wrenched neck. It was excruciating. I couldn’t look to the right, the back of my head/neck hurt, it hurt to chew anything – my jaw ached, and my shoulder/neck area felt frozen and throbbing, alternately.

Greeeattttt….

No rest for the wicked?

Secretly, I hoping to run to the barn on Saturday, where I would ride Oats and have my husband pick me up from the barn to go straight to my in-laws farm (maybe soon to not be their farm if the sale goes through, more changes,. eek!!). Instead, I could barely walk.

Walking even jostled my neck horribly. I was in a ton of pain, on muscle relaxants and alternating hot/cold therapy to just be somewhat mobile. No running for me. I decided to ride anyways (because I’m insane??) but my husband had to help me get Oats out of his pen, groom him- it took forever – because he was so muddy, and lead Oats to and from the arena.

Yeehaw a skinny!

Yeehaw a skinny!

Once I was on, things were ok, though I couldn’t look right at all and was very uncomfortable trying to go right on Oats. He was a good sport though, and seemed very careful with me–even though we were doing a bit of jumping!

Oats taking care of me.

Oats taking care of me.

We got some photos, and I hopped off gingerly, and Ian led Oats back to the barn and helped me untack, carry my saddle back to the barn, and unbridle Oats. That was pretty funny, he tried to pull the whole bridle off Oats’ head w/o undoing the noseband, but did manage to get the throatlatch off. Oats was like WTF? But he’s a good pony now and didn’t take advantage…

We called it a ride, and headed off to the in-laws farm. There, I upped the painkillers a bit and enjoyed some pear picking in the pouring rain (hah!!) and a lot of good quality hot tub and wine time. Sure didn’t hurt my neck situation at all, but mannnnnn did I feel it the next morning…

My neck was pretty much healed by Sunday morning but my wine hangover had a ferocious hold on me. I was like, I’m hungry!! I’d eat something…”I feel sick!!”….I’m hungry!!! I feel sick!!

All morning. Gag.

I didn’t have much time to feel sorry for myself though. We were up and out of the house to cheer on my friend who was running his second marathon!!! Gidget was miserable, whiny and annoyed at waiting around to watch. I was pretty happy though, we managed to cheer him on and get a great photo too! He did awesome.

Great work!!

Great work!!

Then, I felt inspired….

And not quite so sick anymore.

So, like the crazy person I am, I decided to run to the barn, ride, and then maybe run home. Note: this is not a short distance.

My own horse-half marathon? A new challenge? A way to work out the extreme pressure and anxiety I’d been experiencing throughout the week, and was too injured too often to resolve it through exercise?

No matter the reason–I was going to DO IT!

And so, I did. And you know what? It was fine. I jogged to the barn, waved hi to my friend Sarah who saw me at an intersection- and said I was crazy, haha. And I rode and STILL had too much ‘intensity’ in my ride on Oats. Luckily he is still a forgiving pony and he was a good boy for me, even when I come to the barn ‘running high’ and with extra energy I can’t resolve normally.

We worked through some poles- they were terrible, he does better at jumps- and then a brief lateral session once way each where he was quite reasonable, and he was sooooooo sweaty! I then sponged him off, ate a coconut-chocolate Clif bar, and changed back into my clammy workout clothes and prepared to run home.

The run home wasn’t quite as smooth as the way there- my stomach started hurting a LOT, I kind of blame eating the Clif bar so soon after riding and then running again- and my knee was bugging me a bit, and the noise on my calf injury got turned up too…

But I made it fine, it just took a long time.

So, Sunday was an investment in time. Me time. Time to work out whatever anxiety I had going on through my running and riding.

The next day I felt pretty good, tired, but good. Sometimes the fire that burns inside burns too hot and too bright, and threatens to consume us. My way of dealing with it is through exercise.

Beerfest and other sports

Hah, this summer has been so busy. Along with a few horsey activities, we’ve been doing a TON of other stuff, including surfing, camping, NYC, wedding, tons of music festivals and more…Yes I’m spoiled!

Fun times at Beerfest

Fun times at Beerfest

So, this past weekend was Beerfest here. I’ve never gone, as the price to get in ($40) kind of scared me off, because that’s all you get- entry into Beerfest for the tix price. No comp drink tickets, nothing. Yeah, kind of a rip-off in my mind, but I figured just this once…I’ll go.

And was it worth it? Well, yes and no. I had a great time, but I probably wouldn’t go again. I tried TONS of great beer, and it was a ton of fun to hang out- so warm, sunny, hot. The weather was fabulous, we cruised from booth to booth trying different beers.

The standouts?

Fuggles and Warlock Craftworks ‘Strawberry Wit’ beer. The lineup was long when we got there! It was sooo delicious. Yummm.

I also really enjoyed Moon over Water’s Berry Harvest beer, and Whistler Brewing Company’s Mint Mojito beer. Stronger than they look!

I didn’t like though, going home and falling asleep on the couch at 5pm. It kind of eats your whole day, walking around drinking beer! OH well there are worse things to have happen, haha.

I rode Oats on Friday and Sunday, knowing I’d be out of action on Saturday pretty much. We had a fun ride on Friday in the field, and a lazy kind of annoying day on Sunday in the indoor. He was hot, and sluggish. Soooo sleepy. Basically ka-blammed an entire jump to the ground, and smashed my water bottle in the process. BOO! That makes water bottle #4 to bite the dust (broken while jumping, apparently that is how I break most of them!).

Oh well!

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Too much happiness: VIC Fest edition

Too much happiness: VIC Fest edition

This weekend I was lucky enough to get tickets and go to the annual VIC Fest, a cultural/wine/beer/food/music event that happens every year- and I have gone every year too, this is my fourth!

And for some reason, EVERY year is a ridiculous shit-show and I get seriously messed up. Last year I ended up with sunstroke (combination of hot/sunny and too much alcohol), and this year it was just flat-out alcohol. So stupid.

I was having a GREAT time, so good in fact, I didn’t realize how drunk I was becoming…

It should have been a clue that I kept dropping my drinks. Yeah, a cider went to the ground and I went and immediately bought another one, and that one seriously FLEW out of my hand! Like magic! Like the fates were telling me I was drunk enough! Except I didn’t get the message, and bought more…

Yikes.

By the time Said The Whale came on, I was full-on sloshing around. Laughing, crying, kind of a total mess. Having a lot of fun though, and I thought they were great!! We left when the festival ended and I went to a friend’s place, and had another drink…Yeah you can see where this is going…

We went to Canoe Brewpub for an afterparty and listened to some band playing. They were nice, sort of country? Things were getting VERY blurry by that point…I had another cider…

And hit the minuscule dancefloor, after telling off some guys (can’t remember what I shouted at them..???) But they were laughing, so it must have been funny to them! The band finished up, and my friends went to continue the party at Lucky Bar. I was way too out of it to even think about continuing on so I called my husband and he picked me up. Thank god too, because I could barely read my cell phone.

We got home, I think I said something about wanting french fries, so I toasted some bread, ate it, and then promptly ran to the bathroom to throw up. Missed most of the toilet, unfortunately…Well, unfortunate for Ian haha.

I didn’t even brush my teeth.Yuck. My clothes were all over the apartment- jeans in one bathroom, socks in the hall, belt on the floor in the bedroom, t-shirt in my bathroom, bra in the hallway. Yugh.

Had a pretty lousy sleep and woke up feeling worse than death. Was supposed to go for a run in the morning, but I couldn’t even crawl to my cell phone (wherever the hell it was) so Ian ended up texting for me. I think I made it out a bit before 12…To go throw up again. BLAH.

Spent the day feeling sorry for my self-inflicted misery.

It was a fun night through!

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Graceless

Graceless

So, part Sasquatch and part Mr. Oats update. (I do still ride, you know!)

Back to riding Oats on Monday, and he was a total zombie. Longed like a slug- like, he was looking at me with this expression on his face- why are you doing this? I’m tired! Rode in the indoor because I was a bit concerned about transitioning his feet to the outdoor. And the ride itself was ehhhhh….Good flat work warm up, though a bit sluggy. Schooled over two fences set on the diagonal and this is where it fell apart.

I could.not.get.a.distance.to.save.my.freaking.life.

ARGH

He even cruised to a stop! Over a two foot fence! AHHH.

I had to go back to trotting the two fences and then cantered and I still managed to screw it up. Jeeeeeesh. Poor pony, haha.

His canter was nice though, and I ended with some no-stirrups work- which he kind of hates too. Oh well!

And now for some juicy Sasquatch stories….

On the Saturday, my husband and I stayed for the Cut Copy aftershow, that ended around 2am. My friends were partying it up with Hey Ocean! and all was good- rockin’ in fact.

We left after the show, and I was standing by a first-aid tent wearing my red rain jacket, and two people rushed up to me frantically ”there’s a girl having seizure!!” And I was like WTF? I turned behind me and found a paramedic, and was like, ”tell her!” and she rushed off with them. And then ANOTHER girl rushed up to me and was like, there’s a girl having a seizure!! And I was like yes, the paramedics are on it! She thanked me??!

Anyways, so my friends left to go party with the band after, and husband and I trucked home.

I saw them straggling in to the campsite at like 5: 30 a.m. and as it turns out, one of my friends had crash-landed through a guy’s tent in the middle of the night because it was so dark–and there was a guy sleeping in it! HA! What a rude surprise!

We listened to this story laughing our asses off, and then that friend crawled out of her tent looking seriously disheveled…Jared was like, ”Your shirt is on inside-out” and I was like ”and it’s backwards”/// HAHAHA

good times!