The weeks never get less busy. I ran the Virginia Wine Country half marathon on Saturday. Beautiful setting. Nice smaller race, not the best organization ever, but friendly and fun and since the weather was perfect, it was pretty easy to overlook organizational glitches and just enjoy. Then headed over and spent the afternoon at Waredaca. Funny to be there with no official job. Watched a bit, chatted with Jeff and with Steph and Keith - congrats on their new home in Frederick, MD and then got to chat with Gretchen while we dismantled the YEH jumping course. Drove from there down to DC and had some pretty good crab chowder, a beer, and a pomegranate nojito (non-alcoholic mint/pom/lime/seltzer, really good). Henry got in a bit later. Sunday was yoga, brunch and then teaching with Stacey Ackerman. I really enjoy doing our short course on outcomes research for devices and diagnostics. Interest has grown over the 5 or 6 years we've been teaching the course and this was a great, engaged group, making it even more fun. Sunday night wine dinner at Equinox, a very nice DC restaurant that allowed corkage so we drank several bottles of great Henry wine. Online scoring let me know that Josie and Keebler had ended up 3rd after the xc decimated the novice competition. Caitlin and Tucker finished on their dressage score in 2nd place, so it was a great weekend for my distant horses.
The week brought good news and bad news. On the sad side, the eventing (and greater world) lost two wonderful men, Jim Ligon and Dick Thompson, both xc controllers and announcers extraordinaire with additional ties as horse owners, teachers, leaders within organizations such as the Radnor Hunt and pony club. They will both be sorely missed. I was able to spend some great time scribing for Dick, hearing stories of horses and people stretching back through the years in eventing. He remained involved in eventing through the need for an amputation caused by a non-resolving infection in his leg (the picture is of him at the Plantation CIC in September 2011, shortly before the amputation), getting a prosthetic and the issues with it. I will really miss him at the events.
There was also the loss of a lovely four footed eventer, Meadow Sparrow. I think it is because of this little mare that I have a soft spot for Connemara eventers, palominos even more. I remember Maddie Blackman bringing her up through the ranks (or maybe being brought up through the ranks by her as she was definitely an alpha mare). When Maddie outgrew her, Meadow Sparrow went to Alexis Rappaport, primarily doing the junior jumpers at the same time Alexis was eventing with Gizmo. Blondie took brilliantly to that career as well (and looked great all dolled out in her jumper gear). I know both Maddie and Lexi will miss her and remember her as instrumental to their riding careers, and the rest of us will also miss the lovely girl.
Less major, but still frustrating bad news include Keebler coming in Tuesday limping lame in one of his hinds, unknown etiology so far (ultrasound update to follow) and Keegan coming up limping halfway through a jumping lesson (apparently another hoof rim bruise), so no Plantation this weekend.
On the good side, the second city house has a pending contract (hopefully not jinxing us as the process isn't done) after less than 48 hours on the market. Henry continues to improve the country house - several pictures hung, appliances, computer, etc in place, all the painting done. The new mattress is meant to arrive today and washers and dryers on Friday (separate pony laundry once again).
Lots of work to do, which is probably why I am a) blogging, and b) not doing a very good job of it, so more at a later date.