Greetings! Thursday in Aiken meant that we’d be heading out bright and early to watch the training sessions for the USET at Three Runs Plantation. It was terrific to take the clients for a bit of dressage inspiration. The last time I drove down that road and pulled into Three Runs was when Nemo was going to the training sessions, so I have to say I was MUCH more nervous that morning than this morning! It’s much more relaxing to sip coffee and learn by watching, though I did miss having Nemo there, as riding with Mark was an amazing help to my dressage.
We were dedicated spectators, staying for every single ride of the entire day except the first two, when we were at the stables taking care of our own ponies. It was terrific to watch and learn! Afterward, everyone had lunch at Atlanta Bread and felt inspired to go play with dressage! So back at the barn, everyone had a dressage lesson. I think the visual demonstrations were brilliant, as quite a few of the riders rode the best they’ve ever ridden. They are inspired!
The other highlight of the training sessions was that we bumped into Ashley Sager, our working student from 2008 from Massachusetts. It was SO GREAT to see her! She is back in Mass working in finance and came to Aiken for a few days to compete. Ashley is definitely one of our WS all-stars and it was terrific to catch up with her! The 2008 graduating WS year of Jane, Belinda, and Ashley are legendary!
We capped off the evening with a great dinner at my favorite restaurant, Takosushi. This is a really neat concept, as they offer both Mexican food and Sushi–something for everyone! After the draining of many margaritas, cups of saki, and martinis, our DD’s drove us back to the hotel for a good night’s sleep. Tomorrow, cross country!!!
I can’t tell you what a great group we have down here…. Everyone has so much to contribute, and everyone is an absolute joy… The best Aiken trip yet!
(Top photo: Andrea & Syrah school their first trakehner effortlessly!!! Bottom photo: Our girls in teal, getting ready to have some fun!)