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FEI World Equestrian Games and Hurricane Florence


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#1 karens

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 07:23 AM

Hi folks,

 

I imagine some of you are aware of the new Tryon International Equestrian Center, located 80 miles from me. And that the FEI World Equestrian Games are now underway, just started a couple of days ago. It will be 2 weeks of the highest level competition, with the world's best athletes, horse and human, participating in this impressive event. An old college friend of mine, Zora, with whom I've stayed in touch over the decades, is also a horsey person, and lives about 5 miles from this facility, with her horses and husband. Last year she showed me around it, when nothing was happening. I've been looking at the schedule, considering possible attendance, but was slowed down in this consideration due to the cost of each event. Had thought I may go with just a day pass, which offers lots, but no event attendance. I really want to see those world class horses! And they do not let you  wander among the stables!

 

Meanwhile, I live near Asheville, 350 miles from Wilmington, where the storm is bearing down now. Tryon is about 325 miles from Wilmington. So, my friend Zora has a friend who lives near Wilmington, also a horse owner, who had bought tickets to the WEG for 2 days coming up, Friday and Saturday. Even I'm getting impressed with the risks of this storm now, said to be the storm of a lifetime, expected to cover an area generally the size of the bulk of the UK, to linger as it moves through the Carolinas, to cause really bad flooding, I live in the mountains, so have felt we'd be safe here, so far inland, so high up. So it appears Zora's friend from Wilmington is not going to come to the WEG after all, even tho Zora offered her to evacuate with all her crew (self, husband, horse, cats, etc) to Zora's place. Evidently the prospect of facing the standstill traffic, with all in hand so to speak, etc, is daunting. (But facing the storm up close must be equally daunting.)

 

Within this context, unless said person chooses today to go ahead and evacuate, I seem to be the recipient of those tickets for free. Not a certain, 100% thing yet, but nearly. I would leave by 8 am in the morning, tomorrow, to get there, earlier if I can. Then I'm thinking about my crew, horse, cats, dogs, but luckily have another horsey neighbor who will take over. As she said, it's the chance of a lifetime. I would be home by Saturday evening.

 

Another couple of short stories about these topics: Seems a group of sheiks in headdress were lost, near the facility in general, and made a stop in a local school to turn around. The county is a rural county, not used to such things, and high in "Trumpites", as my  friend put it. So, soon, the parents were calling the sheriff, complaining about terrorists on their doorstep! The sheriff has said the county will never be the same again!

 

Another, storm and WEG related, a horse trainer from Mississippi was on his way to the WEG, to give a demonstration daily, not sure. I heard he was stopped in Atlanta and turned back due to the storm!

 

Well, out in California, you folks have the really bad forest fires and the droughts. Here in the east coast, we have water, water, water, in one form or another. Now this!

 

I'll keep you posted!



#2 greygelding

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 08:58 PM

Please do keep us posted. I’m used to fires and know what to do and where to go. A storm the size and expected fury of “yours” would leave me speechless. Keep safe.

Mike

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He knows when you're happy, He knows when you're comfortable,
He knows when you're confident, And he always knows when you have carrots.
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#3 karens

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Posted 18 September 2018 - 01:31 PM

OK, an update:

I did go Friday early and returned Saturday later to my home. I was able to see the Grand Prix Dressage Individual Championship competition. It was fantastic, with the world's leading athletes, horse and human, in this field. Mostly Warmbloods. Several were already Olympians, or soon to be. Then, on Saturday, more Warmbloods and Thouroughbreds in a Cross Country Eventing competition, with water jumps, and in and outs, etc. Saw a few riders unseated, no injuries that I know of. On Friday, watched the dark grey clouds coming in over the arena all afternoon as Florence moved closer. On Saturday, at least it was cooler, and there was just a spitting of rain early in the day. Yes, calculating how to deal with a storm like Florence was tricky, but I successfully did. I left by 4 pm to head up the mountains, and the rain ran with me part of the way, not heavy. I outran it and came home in the dry. Then I stayed home for 2 days. There was a county curfew at 8 pm Sunday, and we had some flooding along the rivers. Being in the mountains, the weather is unpredictable, so heavy rain in places, little in others.

 

I was able to pick up on some of the scuttlebutt about the venue. Seems the owners said they weren't really ready, but all the other possible venues had backed out. Likely the cost? There were some problems, hard to find water in fountains, cost of food and drink really high, $4 for a small bag of chips, $5 for a coke, etc. The endurance ride had to be scrapped, an agreement of many sides, said to be due to heat and humidity. Hard to understand all of that. I bet the folks from the near east were really bummed, as they had mostly signed up for this. That would have been the Arabian horse venue. I had expected to see some guys in headdresses, but didn't. On Sunday, the events were all postponed to Monday due to the hurricane influence. Just a fair amount of general chaos. On another hand, there were folks from all around the world, mixing and mingling. That was exciting.

 

Well, glad I calculated, went on, and got home safely. I've been safe and lucky, but lots of folks further east not so much. Still dealing with these issues.