I was sitting in the VIP tent (ok that alone is really new). My trainer, Christine Traurig had a table and I got to be her guest. I remember at one point looking up and I realized there were 2 Olympians at the table where I was sitting, Gunter was at the next table, directly behind them was Akiko Yamazaki. Walking between the tables was Robert Dover and Debbie MacDonald. I had died and gone to dressage heaven. I was just tingling as the air around me filled with all my heroes and heroines, my friend’s heroes and heroines and all the people whose videos I have watched in awe for my whole life. I wondered, like Dorothy I bet, how I ever ended up here? What decisions, what twists in my road led me to this point? I have no idea; but I am so very thankful and awed to have these opportunities. I really hope that everyone in California and Florida realize how unbelievably lucky they are. I mean when I got to the show I looked at the day sheets and there were 21 CDI PSG rides! That isn’t even including the open show PSG rides. Back home we were lucky if there were half of that in any FEI high performance level class. There were only a couple riders that regularly rode FEI level classes. Just having the opportunity to watch these people ride is an education.
And did I ever get to watch some amazingly beautiful rides. Anna Buffini had the most gorgeous Young Rider test! So proud of you! Steffan’s ride on his new horse Rosie was enough to make me pray for a horse with half that potential someday. To just sit in the saddle of a horse like that is what all of us dream about. I heard Debbie MacDonald say she would put money on Rosie holding major international titles in the next 5 years. The quality and breadth of the horses here is phenomenal. I hope we are all thankful for the opportunity to have these amazing athletes, friends, and partners in our lives. We had better not take them for granted.
I have to say I am thankful for the ability to be here and experience so many new and wonderful things. I am awed and thankful for the opportunity to grow in my sport, but at times I miss Courtney and hanging in the RV. Sometimes I miss eating too many NAJYRC cupcakes and feeling sick. Sometimes I miss running errands for Kathy and the HDS. Miss you guys and the cupcakes!