Saturday, March 29, 2008

Baby Boomer Dreams - Dandy's Story - Dressage The Test

Part 1

So Tom reads me the this is what runs through my mind......

Enter at A working trot. (OK, I know how to do that. This might not be so bad.)

Halt at X. (X .....where in the world is X? What do you mean halfway down the center line is about good? If A is that point on the wall, then X must be a real place too. I am a perfectionist here, I have to know exactly where X is!)

Salute (Salute, what in the heck is this salute thing! What do you mean you "just kinda" raise your hand up, drop your head and then down with your hand? That thing you just did looks really awkward and weird are you sure that's a "proper" salute? These people are already laughing at the dumb Arab lady, I don't want to give them anything more to laugh about. My salute better be d*mn good! Oh god! I'm sweating again!)

Proceed working trot (OK, I know I can do this. This part is good. I can ride to see C, I can ride that far at the trot, I am good long as my girth is tight.)

Track left to E (These letters are nice and big, I can actually see E. I will be ok. I can trot to E but then what do I have to do)

Circle left 20 m (OK, I'm still trotting, I can trot ok......but what in the_ _ _ _ is a 20 m circle! I know how to circle but 20 meters how big is 20 meters. I have no sense of distance, I can't tell ten feet from twenty feet! I know nothing about meters! God help me, why did I say I would do this? Sweat is back, bigtime!)

Between K & A Canter left lead (Oh god, K......what is K? I didn't know these darn letters went up this high. Where do I find K. Then I have to get the correct lead in that short space don't they know this a baby horse. I thought this thing was for beginners. The heat is on. Dandy can do this. I'm OK, well at least it's not a circle!)

At B Circle left 20 m (Oh god! I spoke too soon. Here's another stinking circle. How big is a 20 meter circle? I don't have a clue. Oh geez, I need to know how flipping big a 20 meter circle is. Maybe if I run, no one will notice except maybe by the puddles of sweat I leave behind that I've escaped! I'll apologize to Tom later.)

Between centerline & B Working Trot (Oh thank you lord, back to the working trot. This is the part I get. I can do this part but what's coming next? Maybe I can settle down after all)

C Medium Walk (Ok, ok, I get to C and break down to walk. Sit down and push. Ya, ya, medium walk. everything we do is medium so we're ok here. I can handle this too but I'm still sweating those stinking circles!)

C-H Medium Walk (H.....H What do you mean H? Where in the heck is H? I'm going to get lost out there. I know I am! I'm going to look like a flipping idiot. Oh man, I'm going to embarrass myself and my horse. Somebody help me! Oh man, I'm sweating again.)

HXF Free Walk (FREE WALK! WTF is the Free Walk? Oh, god, I'm going to die out there. Oh, oh settle down, that's that thing where the horse drops its head and stretches.........Dandy can do that! Oh, Thank god! I'm not going to die over this.......but Tom might......I'm thinking serious getting even is in order here)

F-A Medium Walk (More medium walk here. What's the deal. We just did this. Haven't we proved we can walk yet? How much more of this stuff is there going to be? OMG! I think I'm going to die! The sweat is now running down my back just thinking about this ride)

A Working Trot (All right, at least I have this trot down by now. I can do this. How much more can there be left anyway?)

E Circle Right 20 m (Oh dear god, not another circle! I still don't have a clue what a 20 meters looks like let alone in a circle. What did I do to Tom that he hates me this much?)

Between H & C Working Canter Right Lead (Of course, I should have known there would be a right lead request. That is Dandy's hard way but he hasn't missed it in a while. The way this test is going this lead is the least of my worries. Who am I trying to kid? I'm gonna die. If I don't sweat to death, I'm going to die from embarrassment)

B Circle Right 20 M (Of course, I should have known, everything in reverse, even the two bloody circles. I am dead meat! That's it. There is no way I'm going to go out there and look anything but ridiculous. God help me!)

Between centerline & B Working Trot (Geez! How many times do I have to do this darn trot. There must be some trick here that I am missing or they wouldn't make me keep doing it over and over. This is a set-up I can feel it. This stinking test is going to eat me alive!)

Continue Working Trot A Down centerline (Well, at least I'll have my steering. )

X Halt Salute (Oh and here is that funky awkward salute again. It just doesn't feel right to me. If I don't look like an idiot the rest of the test, this salute is going to be the clincher.No doubt about it, I'm going to die! and I'm thinking I"m going to take Tom with me! )

That was just my reaction reading the test. Now I had to ride the darn thing.

To be continued...........

The Ride

This picture is Dandy. I picked a picture of him running in the field because that's really much more like where I would rather have been than a that schooling show.

Visit Blog Village and vote daily for this blog Here They are now measuring the rankings by votes out, so if you find my blog on the site, please click that link too to improve my rankings. TY


  1. That is the BEST discription of what it is like to ride your first dressage test EVER!

  2. Oh Dear. Yep, I am with you. Thank Heavens you could have a reader!

    If I ever make it to a dressage show, I hope they allow Otherwise I KNOW I will get lost out there and get overly creative...

    Cant wait to see how the ride went- you're still killing me here! LOL

  3. I think the test sounds more complicated when you read it than when you ride it. Will be waiting to see how it all turned out.

  4. How on earth are you going to remember all of those tasks? My mind would go blank!

    I bet you did well.

  5. onethebit, it's funny how it is still is so vivid in my mind. I guess that shows what an impression it made.

    mrs mom, after I rode it remembering the test didn't seem like such a big deal. But before it was really intimidating.

    grey horse, I would think after riding a few it would get easier as well.

    kahless, thanks for the vote of confidence. It would have been better to know what a 20 meter circle was. Then I would hane at least felt like I was prepared.

  6. I hate to dis your instructor but really any teacher knows they should make sure someone understands something before getting them to do it!

    If you'd actually seen (and inwardly digested)someone doing a dressage test it would all have made perfect sense.

    Just as well you were allowed a reader and didn't have to remember it too! We always used to practice the test on foot (we were never allowed to practice on the horse because they would anticipate the movements) - trotting round buckets on the lawn. Must have had the neighbours in fits!

  7. a 20 meter circle sounds intimidating, even though it isn't. And I still can't believe your instructor set you up so badly. I'm sure if I had been that nervous I'd have had "failure to launch"!

  8. ro, I think I could have dealt with trotting around buckets on the lawn. Anything that would have helped me be more prepared would have been appreciated.

    holly, I don't think it would have been a problem if I had an idea in my mind what size that actually meant. Failure to launch was never an option with me, I wanted to continue because it was such a challenge and I'm really glad that I did.

  9. Oh my I know why I never advanced beyond beginning western pleasure.

    I don't think I could ever understand the all that is involved in dressage.

    I am proud as anything when my horses have a decent lope with the correct lead.

  10. Did the trainer tell you the little memory trick with the letters?

    All King Edward's Horses Can Make Big Fences?

    I forget the one that uses all 12!

  11. jollynna, I'm with you a good lope is fine with me. lol But I do use dressage basics to get it.

    billie, Geez, I don't even want to know there can be 12 letters!!!

  12. LOL MiKael, he was really mean not preparing you better, if I remember correctly a standard dressage arena is 60 x 40m or 60 x 80m (we were metric in Africa so that was fine and 1m is nearly a yard??) so if he had told you that you wouldndt have been having a meltdown LOL. And if he had told you that you do everything twice once on each lead, that exercising both sides of the brain equally thing LOL.

    That made very entertaining reading, now cant wait to hear the rest. But believe me I know the feeling LOL

  13. Can I just say that I haven't laughed this hard for a long time! i LOVE YOUR WRITING! My daughter has been doing dressage for two years now, and your blog reminds me of the first time I was shown a dressage test. Loving it!

  14. OMG!!!!!!!!! this is my same test!!!!!!
    im in pony club and im a D-2
    my ponys name is billy hes a 13.2 quarter pony...
    lol im not the only one that haz to do this test!!!!!!!!!
    and i CANT have a reader!!!!!!!!!!!
    only the Ds can!!!!!!!!!!
    so share the luv!! lol jk...
    thx 4 the gr8 description!!!!!!!!!!
    ~L8R G8R~

  15. lol the saying is A: A K: king E: eats H: his C: cereal M: morning B: break F: fast

    thats the old pony club one my mom used when she did pony club...

    ~L8R G8R~

  16. Love the alphabet soup-ness of those dressage tests. No auto-pilot here! LOL.

    The Mane Point