Saturday, August 11

London 2012 Olympic Grand Prix Dressage :)




chattering away some years back while we were both mucking out our horses, I said to Colleen that if the Olympic Games ever came to London, we oughta go

and so go we did

it was a looooooooooooooooooong day with much travelling; it was an expense that I really couldn't afford, and I have to confess I wasn't really as excited at the prospect as I should've been
and we got soaking wet

It was the 1st day of the team dressage, Thursday 2nd August and it was such an amazing, awesome day that its taken til now to be able to tell you about it!

We were directed to our seats, 16 rows from the front and directly opposite the beautiful building that is Greenwich House. There were flag-bedecked masts of sailing ships behind it, and behind that was the tall grey office block skyline of London silhouetted against a sometimes blue/sometimes grey, cloud bedecked sky.



In front of our eyes were horse and rider; two separate beings fused as one and each working within the others mindset.
The horses, trying with all the sinews of their beautiful bodies to do as they were bidden, and the riders, trying with all their skill and ability to make that bidding as clear as could be.
Thank heaven for sunglasses because I'm not ashamed to admit I shed a little tear.


the horses? oh my, the horses
the riders? well what can you say?
the talent. . .if only. . .
the venue? "inspired" doesn't do it justice
the commentary? informative without being daft
our seats? couldn't have been better if we'd paid top whack
the spectators? spellbound
(even those who had "just applied for any ticket they could get")
the weather? English
the food? same old London prices but not a rip-off
the toilets? mostly not working
the organisation? couldn't find a fault
the soldier who frisked me going in? gorgeous!
the volunteers lining the way? smiling
volunteers at all the stations? helpful to the nth degree
the staff in Costa? smiling along with the rest of them!
the police horse? really wanted to do dressage but needed a day job
the staff at Victoria coach station who let us change our tickets and didn't charge both of us? lovely!
the coach driver who drove a detour past Harrods cos the Americans hadn't seen it? even lovelier!

I've copied a video off youtube because I didn't take my camera.
Carl Hester deserves a medal simply because he lets his horses "be".
I'm sure the papers will sensationalise Charlotte's deserved win because they can make much of her story and play-up the rivalry twixt her and Laura. But in my mind, Carl Hester's Utopia has the essence of what dressage should be- he might not get those points for lifting feet so high but boy, does he move!
You don't have to understand dressage, just watch the video and enjoy xx

PS If me 'n' Bruce could do just one step of one of those movements I'd be over the moon with happiness!

18 comments:

Autumn Mist said...

Although dressage isn't my favourite discipline, I'm totally jealous of anyone who went! It just looked awesome. I am so proud of our teams in all the horsey events. On the last day I started crying as soon as Charlotte's music started, before she'd even got in the ring. A unique event that you'll have memories of forever.

Jee said...

Loved the dressage - thank goodness BBC put it all on TV cos it was hopeless online with our broadband. Many moons ago husband was quite good and had lessons from a famous teacher but none of our horses were though we bred one who might have been. I felt that neither Carl Hester or Laura got the credit they deserved - and I loved the cheery Portuguese and his super grey . Certainly an Olympics to remember!

Kim said...

Wow Elaine, this is so beautiful. I have tears in my eyes. I have never seen this before...they are shiny and dressed up so tautly sleek. Their movements are precise. This is my only favorite now of the Olympics.
Thank you for sharing this because I never really new what dressage was! ♥

Vintage Jane said...

Glad you had a great day. We went to the Olympic park last Friday and like you were so impressed by the organisation, happy stewards ... everything! M x

Sherri B. said...

I love watching that! It amazes me that a horse could be taught to 'dance' and such a perfect dance at that.

Thank you for sharing your trip..how very exciting to be right there and see it all. xo

helen tilston said...

Hi Elaine

I am delighted to see your dream came true. From your description it sounds like the perfect trip from beginning to end.
Thanks for sharing

Helen xx

Terra said...

You are very blessed to see dressage in person, wow. I love the horses and their skill. I wish more was shown on tv here in the states.

Susan T said...

How DO they train the horses to move like that, it is like watching horse ballet, they are such beautiful animals it brings a tear to your eye - as you say a spectacular setting.

menopausalmusing said...

I am another one who sat wondering HOW they can make horses "dance"..... You sound to have had THE most fantastic of days, one to treasure. The whole Olympics has been such a joy to watch (and I normally never watch sport of any sort!!).

menopausalmusing said...

Oh....... and how did I miss the previous post with those amazing shoes???!!!!

Ivy Black said...

I'm glad you had a great day. Funnily enough,lots of people I know who had tickest for various events didn't much want to go but did and were so glad they did.
I know what you mean, and what a gorgeous, clever horse Utopia is.
xxx

Sue said...

Sounds like a brilliant day.

Dressage is so breathtaking to watch, real skill from both horse and rider, simply beautiful. And you can just imagine the hard work that goes into it for both.

Sue xx

nilly said...

If only we'd been there too, and not so curmudgeonly as to think it wasn't our thing. It is! It was! We loved it all!

Favourite Vintage Finds said...

That's wonderful that you went to see it in person. Love the way those gorgeous horses dance, such elegance. xo

John Gray said...

it was lovely was it not?

all of it was lovely

Pomona said...

Glad you had such a good time! And good to catch up with you too.

Pomona x

Purrfect Haven said...

we watched it on telly - pretty amazing! We haven't been visiting because we have been away and then encumbered with extra work that going on holiday entails. Lovely to be back. Love Helen, Darcy and Bingley xxx

Sylvia said...

Glad you had a wonderful day, Elaine !
Enjoyed the video, amazing !
Sunny weather here, 35° !
Have a nice weekend,
Sylvia

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