Friday, 8 June 2012

Yorkshire Game Fair

Credit: Karen Mitchell at The Peppermint Gallery

Last Friday myself, Helen, Jess, Tinker and Casper trucked off to Stockeld Park, Wetherby, for the Yorkshire Game Fair.  We were there to perform two shows on both Saturday and Sunday, and it was due to be a weekend of firsts!

This was the first show at which we had to set up the stable tent, which I had only finished putting together the previous weekend.  I had reckoned on it taking about an hour for us to work everything out and get it all set up satisfactorilySo, two and a half hours later...!  Once we were finally set up we took Casper up to the arena for a run through, which went far smoother than the tent set up!  Having finally got the horses sorted and settled, and fed ourselves, it was a very late bed time and we were all shattered!

Saturday was another glorious day and we were due on at 11am with Casper and then 4.30pm with Tinker.  This was to be Casper's first big show of the season (his second ever!), Helen's first big show commentating and Galloping Acrobatics' first big public appearance.  To say we were all slightly nervous is an understatement!  On came the music and in we went!!  I can honestly say I really enjoyed the entire show.  Casper was lovely to vault on and did a perfect dance.  Helen's commentary was brilliant and the crowd clapped and cheered in all the right places - success!  We were absolutely buzzing when we came out and really looking forward to the second show.  Helen's parent's and younger sister were there and having not seen us since our little demo at Richmond were suitably impressed!

The afternoon whizzed by and before we knew it it was time for Tinker's show.  This was the very first time we had run the show through with an audience, but once again everything went smoothly.  I haven't vaulted on Tinker at an outdoor show since Frampton Show last September as Jive Pony, and I have really missed it.  It was just brilliant to be out in front of an audience with Tinker.  He is so lovely to vault on - I don't even have to think about him, I just know and trust him completely.  Although I love vaulting on Casper he is still at a stage where I have to concentrate on him throughout; making sure every move is at a point where he can cope with it, taking into account all the variables in an arena and how they may affect him, encouraging him that he's doing the right thing and correcting him if not - it's hard work!  With Tinker I can just enjoy myself, as I know he'll always (99.99% of the time!) be there for me.  The amount of appreciation I have for Tinker has only been heightened since his operation (more on this anon), and the possibility that I may not have him with me anymore.  Needless to say I enjoyed the show more than I can say, and everyone who came to see us afterwards commented on how much fun we looked like we were having!  You can see a little bit of what we got up to in the video below.

On Saturday evening Helen and I took the boys out exploring to see what we could see.  We had a lovely ride all around the show ground, past the gun dogs, clay shooting, stalls, lurcher racing, zorbing, crafts and poultry - just to name a few sections!  We then went out all around the park, before going up to the house and then making our way back home.  Then it was supper and bed before doing it all again tomorrow!

Sunday was another scorcher of a day, and there were even more people we knew coming to see us - no pressure then!  Casper's show went through well until the chasing and rearing section.  I run out of the circle with Casper chasing me, up to one side of the arena where I do a count down - 'THREE, TWO, ONE, HIGH!!'  On 'high' Casper rears right up, before we run off to the next side of the arena and repeat the exercise.  Jess was holding Tinker at the side of the arena, just to give Casper some moral support throughout the show.  As we ran past Tinker Casper was obviously reluctant to leave him.  Still, he chased me down to the bottom of the arena (quite a fair slope) where I asked him for the rear.  'THREE, TWO, ONE...'  Casper just looked at me, turned around and cantered back up the hill to Tinker.  '...BYE!'  So I then had to race back up the hill after him - very embarrassing!  Other than that the show went through really well so I was very pleased with him.

We passed the time between the two shows wandering around the stalls, where we found the Cyclo-ssage stand.  I always love a free massage so we were on the demo table without further ado and had a lovely twenty minute of being vibrated, heated up and wobbled!  We also watched Ben's (my boyfriend) Eagle and Vulture Show, as he was flying the birds in the main arena.  It was lovely to see them fly, as although I see them every day it's not quite the same at home.

Our afternoon show with Tinker went through really well again, and lots of people followed us back to the stables to see the horses and talk to us.  I think this is Tinker and Casper's favourite part of the day, they get so much fuss from everyone! 

It was finally time to pack down (much quicker than setting up!) and come home - our weekend of firsts was finally over!  We had a brilliant time, and you can see a few photos here.  We're off to Rawdon Fun Day tomorrow, where we will be performing on Saturday - I'll let you know how we get on!

Love Rosie xx

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