Yesterday I bought (second hand) riding clothes in preparation for my first dressage lesson in almost 15 years. Needless to say, I’m so excited!
As some of you may know, I’m working on a new book about a young man who becomes a dressage rider. (Dressage is form of English riding. The word simply means “training”. At the highest levels it looks like dancing on horseback. At my level, it’s like riding around in a ring, going from point A to point B and hoping for the best.)
In the course of working on this book, I’ve been hanging around horses and horse people and surprise, surprise; I’ve caught the riding bug again. It’s the same bug that caused me to spend much of my childhood dreaming of horses; the bug that led me to gallop around on my hands and knees long past when I should have been making my way on two feet. This bug is the reason I only know how to draw horses and the explanation for my ability to make a convincing galloping noise with my mouth. (Useful skills, all!)
When I was ten years old I spent every penny I’d ever received to buy my first horse. His name was Echo’s Little Wonder. He was a 16’2 Appaloosa and he seemed to feel that it was his mission to teach me to fall off. He bore a striking resemblance to Edward, the grey Percheron/Thoroughbred cross who has kindly agreed to allow me to take dressage lessons on him. I’m hoping the Edward is a bit less committed to the me-falling-off project.
I will keep you posted. And in the meantime, if you see some oddball driving, walking the dog, or cooking dinner in full English riding regalia — breeches, helmet and halfchaps — that someone is probably so excited that she just can’t hide it.