In the early days, on quiet weekends, Agatha would leave Caleb and Bart to their refurbishing work and sneak off with Poquelin to compete. Ambling through the sun-dappled woods and overgrown fields of home was relaxing- of this there was no doubt- but she often would find herself needing.... more. The skill, the adrenaline, the test of self- show jumping was an addiction, and Agatha needed her fix.
Waldemar was two hours east of Pemberton, via slow and winding valley roads, but it beat driving down through hellish weekend traffic to ride at the State Centre in the city. There did happen to be a secondary benefit of attending minor events like the one in Waldemar; a secondary benefit, but Agatha’s personal favourite: relative anonymity.
See, in Agatha's experience, three kinds of people attended local shows: kids and pleasure riders- country bumpkins- who were drawn in by the promise of lively socialisation and an excuse to eat ungodly fairground food; nose-in-the-air city riders, who were wealthy enough to travel out of St. Claire to compete on the weekend, but not quite talented enough to attend bigger events at better venues in the city, and thus not travel at all; and professionals, trainers and riders, who needed a testing ground for young or new talent, be it horse or human.
And this suited Agatha well: the country folk wouldn’t know who she was; the professionals wouldn’t care; and those who were God’s gift to the equestrian world would be far too interested in themselves to be interested in her. Which meant, no matter the ratio of kind to kind, that Agatha could attend a public event whilst enjoying one of the greatest pleasures in life: privacy.
As it happened, Agatha enjoyed her day in Waldemar. Class was on a dewy spring morning, when the sun was out, bright and blinding, but a crisp cool lurked in the shade; the air was fragrant with grass and earth and opened flowers, and Poquelin was as fresh as the day. Their round was clear, the drive home was smooth, and- best of all-
- everyone left her alone.