Greetings from Gladstone! I arrived with both my best horses on the East Coast of America just in time to experience our first hurricane. But as I sit here waiting for the last drizzles of Hurricane Irene to subside, I realize that I have seen the likes of her all over the world even though she is normally referred to as a rainstorm with some wind. A bit anti-climatical, this hurricane thing. Lets be thankful for that!
The warning cry of Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride in 1775, although historically dubious, will resonate with credibility in contemporary times at the European Dressage Championships in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, next weekend. The Germans and the Dutch will feel the full power of that cry.
Life is a whirlwind! My groom, Anna Pettersson, and myself drove to Hickstead (England) at the end of July to fit in one more horse show before leaving for the United States.
We drove to Calais, parked the horse van on the ferry, crossed the English Channel to Dover, and then made the short drive to Hickstead in the south of England.
Hickstead is a fabulous show with impeccable organization. The footing is superb, the spectators are educated and appreciative, and I always have a feeling that I am in a country that exudes good horsemanship.
Since I am writing this blog in order to include you on the inside of my professional life, I will continue the saga of how Catherine Haddad Staller manages to pull herself out of a blue funk and get back on her feet.
It’s been a long time since I’ve written to you. Six weeks actually, but those weeks felt like six months. Sometimes I have to step back from my sport and dig deep for a reason to keep doing it. That can take hours, or it can take months depending on how strong I am and how much time I take to actually think about it.
When Michelangelo was asked how he would sculpt an elephant, he said, “I would start with a block of stone and take away all that is not the elephant.”
I kept this concept in my head when I rode the World Cup Final at Leipzig last Saturday night. In the end, all that really matters is the masterpiece that emerges. The pieces that you chip away are just Schrott (“scraps, bits to be thrown away” in English).
I think about Mr. Schultheis nearly every day, but it has been a long time since I wrote more stories about my time with him. A reader’s comment on one of the old Schultheis blogs prompted me to tell this story about his cat.
During my time at the Schultheis stable, we had a pack of dogs (two Jack Russells, one Corgi—in this case three is a pack) that wrecked havoc on the place whenever possible. Their unruly numbers were only quelled by the cool stare of one cat: The Chef.