Blog 9: Down Time
Rhapsody continues to look and feel great this past month and I have been feeling a little smug at the amount of work I have still been able to do with him around my job - despite the clocks going back - helped in part due to the exceptionally mild weather. Also of course until recently it has been reasonably dry - and so we have been doing plenty of hacking and working in the school and keeping ourselves in shape! I am also thrilled to see that provisionally next year there will be no less than three 3* international para competitions in England - not just the one at Hartpury as in the past. Perhaps this is due to the European Championships taking place next year… or the fact that qualification for Rio starts in January 2015, but whatever the reason it is a welcome addition to the calendar and I have already booked the time off work!
As a result I was keen to get out to some competitions again and entered a local BD show at the end of October. We came 3rd, just 0.5 of a mark behind 2nd and I was pleased with how the test went. On the strength of that I organised a day off from my 9-5 job to enter a para show which I was really looking forward to but when we had torrential rain the night before and all through the morning of the competition I decided that maybe an outdoor show in November is not such a good idea! My main concern was the state of the going in the arenas and not wanting to risk any injury to Rhapsody I withdrew. I was very disappointed but it did make me take stock… I realised that as much as I want to get out and take advantage of all the fantastic training we have had with Andrew Murphy, it dawned on me that maybe the pressures of the past 3 years were finally catching up with me. I needed a little down time… Knowing me this feeling will not last for long and no doubt will soon be looking at competition schedules again but at least until the New Year and my hopeful trip to the Virgin Islands I think I will just enjoy riding and working Rhaps… and making plans for next year... no pressure!!