Thank you to all our guests who attended the January Symposium here at Barbier Farms. After a rainy start on Friday, the weather cleared and we enjoyed a weekend full of warmth and sunshine.

We had the great pleasure to share our new format with more than 35 attendees.  Morning lectures, a guided meditation, and afternoon lectures, all accompanied by stunning imagery, created the structure of the clinic.  We had great discussions about the heritage and tradition of Classical Equitation, about the gifts of the Masters and how we use the teaching today, and about the fundamentals of preparing your horse for work in relaxation.  Learning to see was a constant thread through all the discussions.  If we can’t tell the difference between a horse working in relaxation and a horse creating movement from rigidity, we will never be able to visualize what we want, therefore we will never be able to communicate clearly with our horses, our dancing partners.

Participants ranged in age from 10 to 87!  Eventers, jumpers, and dressage enthusiasts all enjoyed the different levels of work that the horses demonstrated. And I had a wonderful time with Sedoso (MAC). He felt like doing canter pirouettes (correct three-beat pirouettes) and a piaffe and passage tour, so we did. It was great to spend some time with my horse and share the pleasure with the audience that he always gives me.

On Saturday night we held a wonderful dinner in our home, with 44 guests.  It was a noisy, raucous affair and a great time was had by all.  It was especially gratifying to see people from all over the country mixing and enjoying each other’s company, all sharing one common bond ~ the love of our horses.  We had attendees from Oregon, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Iowa, Florida, New Mexico, and all over California.

It was a great pleasure to have Laurie Wachter, friend, neighbor, and “mom” to Primo and Zacharias….participating with her two beautiful Lusitanos. Candida Von Braun, whose pictures with Herodes have been featured here, bravely attended the clinic though she had been sick with a flu.  It was great to see you, Candida, and we look forward to having you back in the ring in April!  Sade Cain, Alex Tett, Nina Stein, and Caitlyn Holden made up our youth contingent.  They all did an amazing job with their horses, showing the old folks how truly easy it can be to create a beautiful partnership, in lightness, with your horse.  Brava, girls! Keep up the fabulous work and please….careful over those fences!

We’re currently preparing for the next event in the Symposium Series.  The dates are:  April 15, 16, and 17.  Mark your calendar NOW….make your plane reservations SOON…and come enjoy the warmth and sunshine of a California spring with us.