Ok. In my 43 years atop horses, I've had some doozies. But if I had to pick just one, it would be this one, because it happened during a clinic with an "I" judge. At USET Headquarters, Gladstone NJ. Yes, my friends, the fairytale Mecca of all US English-riding little girls and boys, and big ones too.
My first horse, a bloody gorgeous 17H Dutch WB gelding ex-jumper by Le Mexico and I accompanied mybtrainer to the 2 day clinic with a well-known and much beloved elder statesman-judge here in the NorthEast. I had ridden since I was 10, starting in H/J, moving to 3 Day and dressage in college. Quit for a while after college to start my business, then started back and found my boy.
Cecil was stunning, both conformation-wise and moving. I collected many inquiries about him from big name dressage riders and trainers until they found out his age- I bought him when he was 10 and lost him at age 14. He was very sensitive and difficult-his free walk overtracked by almost 2 ft. Measured, and one had to exercise care not to resemble a porn star when riding it, as it made your pelvis do things it didn't know it could
Back to Gladstone. I bring this gorgeous horse into the upper level of the main barn. Riders of all levels were there, and EVERYONE knew more than me. But of course, I didn't know that yet I thought that I was a prittty, prittty, priittty good rider. I'd done a little big eq, did some low jumpers, evented with success, did a few dressage shows, all on schoolhorses. I taught some. I was pretty good, I thought.
Oh no. First lesson, I started warming up in the indoor. My horse just got faster and faster and I did what I thought was DRESSAGE. Hmmph.
Clinician gradually stopped giving generalizations to the large audience an began to watch me with consternation. Try as he might, and try as I did, I couldn't grasp what he wanted.
So then it happened.He told me to drop the reins. And hold onto the pommel.
Then he ran beside me with his hands on the reins near the bit.
I have the whole thing on video. Round and round we went, him jiggling and jogging, me bouncing and mortified. Did I mention the standing-room-only gallery
So, lets hear them. Your most humbling experience. Doesn't have to be dressagey, just funny.