June 3, 2012

An Evening at the Polo Matches

I've been hearing about these polo matches in Virginia since I got here, but I'd never been. So when my friend Kim invited me to join her, I jumped at the chance.

The drive out to Great Meadow in The Plains, VA, took about 40 mins or so, which was less than the solid hour Google Maps had predicted, so already things were off to a good start. We parked, carried in our supplies (camping chairs, blankets, food, and cooler), and found a spot on the hill with a great view.
On 'Mad Hatter' night, Kim came well prepared
We started to pick up on the rules during the warm-up games, though I still think my understanding is a bit hazy as to what constitutes a foul and what isn't.
The main event matches were very impressive. Rider and horse seemed to move together so fluidly, and the mallet swinging was very precise to be able to hit the ball while on the run. Also, Kim pointed out that in between 'chukkers' (what we think is a term for 'period'), they'd switch out horses, so they'd go through several horses for a single night's match.
If you do go out to watch the polo matches, be aware that it can get fairly chilly at night, or at least it did our night. Thank goodness for some random spare clothes and my trusty ol' BYU blanket in the car.

Pretty cool, right? Have you ever been? What other less-watched sports have you seen live?

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