Blogger Contest Round One: Seija Samoylenko

We announced the six Blogger Contest finalists this week, and now we’re bringing you each submission from Round 1 here on Bloggers Row. We will be posting all six entries over the next few days, so be sure to check them out and leave your feedback in the comments.

All entries will be reprinted without editing for fairness’ sake. Thanks again for your support and readership, EN! We are thrilled to have such quality entries yet again this year.

I love to blog

It’s kind of ironic I’m writing an entry for a blogging contest, about eventing, in my college library.  I should be finishing my research paper about development.  Or working on my final problem set.  But, alas, here I am.  My horse is sitting in a paddock on this beautiful day while I toil away.  Also, I’ve only got two events planned for this summer.  In mid-July I ship out for study abroad in Australia.  Wow, it really looks like I’m getting off the eventing bandwagon.

In stark contrast, a year ago today was my first day working for Boyd Martin.  For three months I lived and breathed eventing, trot sets, putting in and taking out more studs and braids then a little girl could dream up.  I was hot and sun-burnt 95 percent of the time.  I required many of Mr. Martin’s motivational speeches to figure out what the heck I was doing there, and met some pretty cool friends and mentors along the way.  Someone once asked me the best part of the experience. Honestly, it was Boyd telling me “you look fit” before I hoped on my horse for cross-country at Fitch’s Corner.  Anyone who knows Boyd (or even doesn’t) knows this would pump you up better than any rap song.  I retired at fence 5 incase anyone cares.  The trauma of that failed result has been forgotten, but the memory will live on.

At the end of the day, that’s the best part of this sport we do.  Ribbons, competitions, training lists kind of all fall to the wayside.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m one of the most competitive people known to man.  A rail, a time penalty, or god-forbid a cross-country stop will send me into a tailspin.  But the real memories are the little things, as cliché as it sounds.  Like getting enough courage to ask Michael Jung for a picture an hour after he won Rolex.  Or when your boss buys you a snow cone for your lunch in the middle of a wild day of grooming.

We all have to find ways to fit this crazy sport/lifestyle into our other life goals.  Read: making enough money to support yourself.  Also: having a family, traveling, still being a well-fed, well-educated member of society.  Sometimes this drive for success and recognition makes it seem like other life goals aren’t as respected as our riding ones—especially as a young rider. I’m at a place where I can finally accept NAJYRC definitely won’t happen.  I want to finish my degree, see the world, enjoy being twenty, but still stay connected and contribute to the sport that’s my home.  So EN, what to come along for the ride?