Dancing horses always give me warm fuzzies…they’re just so darned cute when they do it. I can only recall seeing them here in CR so I have been excited for a couple of weeks when I found out my friend wanted to go to Santa Teresita to see them do what they do this past Sunday. This gait they have comes naturally to some, as the other woman who was with us told me. Others have to be taught by putting weights on their feet. The horses were fairly small from what I’m used to seeing, which is also due to the particular breed.
So none of us had any idea what would actually happen at this event. We arrived around 11:30 after being told it would start at noon. HA! Tico time sets in here and after 3 hours, nothing was really happening. In the meantime we found a concrete bench looking over the soccer field and thought we were lucky to have it. Horses were brought in on trailers and the soccer field went from sparse to almost completely full.
Riders were prancing around on their horses and that was fun to see. Some weren’t so good, while others were VERY good. This one in particular that was near us looked like some kind of Roman battle horse. Strong chested and regal looking with its dark coat and long mane, always seemed to stand proud with its head pointing down. They also had a white horse and the two together looked like something out of a fairy tale.
Another horse, which was probably my favorite, seemed to dance perfectly to the music that was playing. It actually looked like it was enjoying itself and did such a nice job. I wanted to hug it so hard!! What a good horse!
There was one horse in particular that was tied up next to me and had been there a while. I know NOTHING about horses but have always felt vulnerable around them due to their size and what they could do to me if they ever freaked out. When I saw that this horse would turn its back to me, I’d get up and get out of kicking distance. It had started to dig at the ground and I asked the lady with us why it was doing that. She said it might be stressed and who could blame it? I would have been too.
It started raining a little bit and it’s all sort of a blur now, but the horse started whining and struggling. I immediately bolted from my seat and when I was about 10 feet from where I was, I turned around to see that it had run into the bench we were sitting on and had kicked or stepped on the woman’s foot (which was already swollen and she had it propped up). They calmed the horse down and her foot was all muddy and looked like it was bruised. She said it wasn’t broken but what a thing to happen to her! She was a really good sport though and from there on out we were careful about getting too close to the horses.
They announced something over the speaker and the horses and riders started lining up to go down the street. The place was packed by now and I had a bad feeling that it would be a while before we could get out of there. And sure enough after a slow parade down the street, shared by horses we came to a stop for no apparent reason. After quite a wait we inched along again only to come to another halt closer to where all of the horses and riders congregated. The narrow road turned into a parking lot/party. People got out of their cars to get beers out of their trunks. People came up to cars asking if they wanted anything to drink and at one point, a guy rode by with about 4 Imperials in his hand.
It was like that old saying, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. However, we sat and waited and I guess the police finally showed up and started directing traffic.
About two hours after we had left the soccer field we were on the way back home. With the threat of rain looming and lightning in the distance, I could only imagine what the streets would be like with drunk riders/drivers and horses in tow. Welcome to Costa Rica!! It was certainly an event I’m glad I didn’t miss. I spliced together a video of the footage I took there. It’s about a 7 minute clip if you’re in the mood to view it, you can find it here.
0 thoughts on “Dancing Horses”
What a fun day and so smart of you to keep a watchful eye and get out of the path of a frustrated horse! These look like Paso Finos or Peruvian Pasos which are known for their smooth, dancing gait.
Looking at your Video, I thought they may be carrying the beer as part of a contest. It isn’t unusual for gaited horse people to test the smoothness of the ride by carrying a glass of wine. Nothing should spill. In the case of a can of beer, nothing should fizz when opened at the other end. Just a wild guess. I wish I could have been there!
I think these Ticos just wanted to drink! lol. They had tequila shots going around noon on the field and some riders were carrying canteens. Not a good time to be on the road when that party was over!