Horses for Courses
I’ve been watching the Olympic equestrian this morning (do not get me started on how hard it was find it showing on US TV, and how annoying the cheesy American presenters were).
I’m not a big TV watcher, and the thought of staring at it first thing in the morning makes me feel a bit queasy, but it was worth breaking the rules to see those gorgeous horses working so hard in the show-jumping ring. It was really thrilling, sweaty palms stuff, not just as the New Zealand riders took the course, but when all the others did too, and I ended up yelling at the telly as the anticipation built. I may have even jumped up and down a little bit when the kiwis did so well (that’s about as patriotic as I get).
Afterwards I got back to work, but not before I spent a few minutes plotting out how I could get myself into New Zealand’s equestrian team for the next Olympics. I’m not kidding. That’s how deluded I am: I watch Olympic athletes and start to plan how I’ll become one. I do the same when I go to the ballet: stare at these finely tuned – and unbelievably thin – athletes on stage and think, ‘I could do that’. I so could not do that. I’m 40. And I can hardly run for 15 minutes without pulling a muscle or having a heart palpitation.
I blame it all on my parents, who every time I said I wanted to do something – become an opera singer, be a hairdresser, train as a vet – without fail said, ‘You’ll be really good at that’. It makes for a very healthy self-esteem, which is a good thing, but it also makes for a entirely unrealistic awareness of my limitations.