I think the easy answer is "I don't have a made horse." It seems like a popular one, and certainly one that's easy to empathize with, but I'm also pretty sure that even the people spending $250,000 on a derby finalist could swear that they aren't buying a made horse either.
So I'm skipping that one (for the moment) and moving on to a few others.
I think probably the biggest thing that sets me apart at this point is that I prefer to do as much of my own care as possible. I enjoy grooming my own horses, I enjoy wrapping them myself, hauling them myself and being involved with as many decisions as possible.
I fully recognize that there are plenty of DQ's out there who enjoy full service facilities and full service showing, but I think the Hunter Jumper circuit probably has the highest percentage of competitors coming from full training barns with full setups and full grooming. There are plenty of exceptions and I totally see those folks too (we're usually commiserating with each other in the wash racks at the end of the day) but I still think they are the minority.
So, that makes me weird. I did dabble with having a full groom at one show, and while it was really relaxing in some ways (your tack being magically cleaned was kinda cool, so was someone to hold your horse while you pee), it was stressful in other ways too (not having my hands on the mare's legs, not getting a sense of her mood as we tacked up... not knowing what to do with myself while someone else cooled her out..).
I'm not saying I won't ever hire a groom again, but I think I have my most fun when I'm scurrying around trying to get everything organized and The Boy is chasing after us with a rag in hand to clean us up at the back gate.
|Back Gate Crew|
Though they are all Pikeurs... so I'm not sure that counts against the whole "princess" thing.
There are definite things that throw me into the princess category, which I don't mind. I thoroughly enjoy hemorrhaging cash on tack and pretty things for the ponies (like my truck and trailer). But I like to think that I get so much enjoyment out of using it all and cleaning it all that maybe I'm not obnoxious about it.
My horse is also fancy, though she was totally a nitwit when I bought her and couldn't execute a balanced canter transition to save her life, does that exclude her from the HP stereotype? I guess I'm not sure.
|(not quite "made" lol)|
I hope I'm smart enough to know the lady on the $50k horse is probably having just as difficult a time as I am. Or that the one paying for a groom for the day might have cash burning a hole in her pocket, or maybe hiring a groom is what lets her still work an evening shift, or take care of her kids or whatever.
I do sorta wish that more people camped out at the H/J shows. I miss that from evening. Though it's a little easier to rough it for 3 days as opposed to a 5 week circuit in the desert. haha.