Friday, February 22, 2013

Twenty years ago

At the beginning of 1993, my friend Trisha and I both had horse related jobs that wintered in Florida. I was staying in Jacksonville for a couple pre-circuit shows when I noticed there were four full days between the end of the first show and the beginning of the second.  That was more than enough time for a short road trip, so I borrowed my boss's truck...
and headed south to Palm Bay.
Trish and I hadn't seen each other since I'd moved from Colorado to Tennessee in 1991 so we had lots of catching up to do.
I especially enjoyed meeting her new dressage Arab, Zee... 
and watching the two of them take lessons from Trisha's boss, the international dressage rider, Michael Poulin
When she wasn't riding, Trish was really busy with stable work.
I tagged along and helped where I could, but this wasn't a barn that was particularly friendly to strangers.
Mostly I tried to stay out of everyone's way, which meant I spent a lot of time hanging out with the horses.  
This was not a hardship.  
Michael had some really lovely horses in his barn that year, including the Hanoverian stallion, Watch Me...
Watch Me
and his 1992 Olympic mount, Graf George.
Graf George
There was also a big herd of Hanoverian broodmares and foals on the property.
So cute!  Who needs people when there are pastures filled with foals?
Of course, you can't go to Florida and spend all your time at the barn.  Trisha's apartment was just a couple miles away from the beach, so we went there, too.
Time flies when you're surrounded by friends and horses, and it seemed like this trip was over in the blink of an eye.  Fortunately, I still had a lot of Florida circuit left to go, and the best was yet to come!


  1. I agree horses are much better then people by far, they don't tend to yell at you for doing something wrong lol

  2. What fun! Watch Me was gorgeous!

  3. So many gorgeous horses. And I just adore foals, even if they can be idiotic.

  4. Reflectingstars StablesFebruary 22, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    So fun! Horses are way more fun than people anyway. So gorgeous!

  5. Although he played second fiddle to Graf George, Watch Me was an accomplished Grand Prix dressage horse in his own right. As I mentioned in the post about George, I was fairly disappointed with George's looks. Not so with Watch Me. That horse was gorgeous!

    I wish I could have taken pictures of the two of them under saddle, but that was strictly verboten. I've been known to cheat a bit in regards to photo bans, but honestly, Michael scared me a little. I kept the lens cover securely in place every time I watched him ride.

  6. It's posts like these that make me wonder just how many photos you have taken in your life. You have pictures of everything, it's awesome!

    1. I'm not sure I want to know how many pictures I've taken. I'm sure it's a very, very big number...

      Some of the photos are in albums, but unfortunately, there are just as many in boxes and tubs. I've been trying to scan the best photos and get them organized, but it's an uphill battle. That's one of the reasons why I write posts like these. It makes it easier to do all that work when there's a tangible end goal. Also, it's nice to share them with people who like looking at old horse pictures. I love my husband and kids, but they have absolutely no interest in this part of my life.

  7. 'Watch Me' - what an aptly named horse - I certainly would pay attention to him if I saw him at a show!

  8. Love posts like these. :) They inspire me to take my camera with me everywhere. (I'm not really good at that though, ha!)

    Great photos! That dapple grey... <3

  9. Beautiful horses! I actually grew up in Jacksonville. :)

  10. I just LOVE your tack (and all your photos!)
    I've been following your blog for 8+ months now almost since I started the hobby. I love reading your blog it is very helpful for a novice performance shower like me. I have a pretty nice western working saddle set in a raffle and some pole bending poles but that is it for Traditional things. Well- I do have a lovely Half pad but no English saddle to use it with! lol

    I do customize, mostly SMs and Micro minis.
    I have also been doing a bunch of tack making and prop making, also mostly Sms and Micros.

    In fact, about a month in a half ago I got the wild idea to enter as many performance classes as possible in the next show I'm going to (which is next weekend) I'm entering a micro mini in 18 out of 23 classes! (I know crazy right!) I'll tell you how it goes. :)

    Thank you SOOOO MUCH for this blog!!!

    1. Take lots of pictures and let us know how you do. Good luck!

  11. OMG! The things you've done and the horses you've seen....just mindblowing! (Once again you've highlighted just how sheltered a life I've lived! hahaha)

    I'm SO appreciative of your blog!!

  12. Wow, Watch Me is gorgeous and I remember Graf George--too cool! I am lucky to board my mare at a small Hanoverian breeder's facility. They are very beautiful and solid horses.

  13. Wow, some of those horses are stunning!


  14. I love your blog makes me remember when I was in HIgh school and had no money to take leassons and I used to tack for other people in exchange for leassons to learn to jump on cute little horses, keep up the good work

  15. Oh to be alone in a field with foals!!