July 16, 2012–It appears I’m in full training for London here in France, even in terms of the weather! It has been stormy and rainy every day–not summer weather. The horses flew from Calgary to Maastricht and then drove here to Rosiers aux Salines near Nancy on Thursday. I was in Newmarket, England for a few days with my boyfriend Tim where it was also very rainy. He took me to a beautiful hotel in Cambridge for an amazing birthday dinner then surprised me with a party with a big group of friends. It was so fun! I was very sad to leave because I don’t think we will see each other for about three weeks until the games and I obviously will be a bit busy then! I flew to Paris early Thursday morning to meet with Katie and Henri and we drove to Rosiers.
Goose (Ligist), Wuby (Mika), Squishy (Onisha), and Bertha (Cylana) all shipped very well! Everyone was very happy to be able to turn out again even if it was icky and rainy out. Everyone had a light day of lunging Friday and I started flatting Saturday. I also rode some of the babies. True Blue is five years old and See Bella is four years old. I love See Bella. She is HUGE for her age, but is crazy careful and brave. After two days of easy work, Katie informed me the vacation is over and promptly took my stirrups away! I only had Goose to do without today.
I later had a flat lesson on Cylana. She was perfect as always but a little irritable because she feels it is time to jump again and she heard a rumor Mika is going to chantilly and not her! She told me it’s not OK–hello, she’s the highest on the short list, so she should go to every big show. I tried explaining to her that she has to save herself for the Games but she wasn’t having it! Big Mama is happiest in the show ring, not being pampered and saved at home.
Although Rosiers is very pretty and a great place to relax and have some down time, there is not much going on here. It is a very old and very small village. There is a bakery, a coiffeur, and an insane asylum, so it is not very densely populated. It can be a bit lonely without Tim or my parents here. You can only ride for so many hours a day! But Katie and Henri are great godparents and fill the evenings with fun dinners. Katie is an amazing chef so we enjoy each night eating her delicious food. However, living 20 feet from the bakery is very dangerous and I have been trying to stay away! Today I ran from grandma’s house to the farm which is roughly 5 km and I forgot just how uphill it is! I normally run on a treadmill so this incline was a shock to me. About halfway there, I thought about hitchhiking until I remembered that there is no one around to drive by! I arrived in a lather just as it began to pour again–Tracey kindly drove me home so I didn’t have to run back in the storm.
After my little workout, I had some delicious leftovers with Katie, Henri, and Grandma and I am now about to go to sleep as I do every night I’m here at about 8:30. Nice to have some rest but I’m excited to go to Chantilly Wednesday and meet my mom there!
For more about Reed Kessler’s Olympic show jumping experience, go to the show jumping coverage.