What I Ate (Steeplechasing)

by Sarah on May 2, 2012 · 12 comments

Last Saturday, I found myself at Foxfield Races, the Spring edition.

Unlike the Fall version of this steeplechase–with its focus on family–the spring run at Foxfield is notoriously infamous (how’s that for a doubled-upped connotation of despicable reputation?) for its conglomeration of college students, alcohol, and the subsequent debauchery that ensues.Now, having grown up in a family where ‘steeplechasing’ was a family affair, where we actually watched races, guessed at winning horses based on their extravagent show names, and feasted on Southern-style tailgate food–yes, even in Yankee territory–I was actually quite excited to return to the races as an “adult,” and have a more classy tailgate with friends.But you know what they say about good intentions…and I  just might have found myself in hell a land of drunken co-ed craziness. However, Jenn and friends, before we get to that, I’ll invite you to tag along at my tailgate. :)The day began with an early start after a long week. Despite my rushing around to get to the meeting location on time, my priorities were on fueling up with some oatmeal.

Timing is everything, and the lack of it meant oatmeal soup.

 In a mug.

And yet, there always seems to be enough time to take a picture...

To go.

This is your aluminum foil on recycling. (Well, fine...reusing.)

Waking up to the forecast of imminent rain meant that there was no way I was putting on a sundress. Despite the threats of rain, my rainboots (and the hat I borrowed from Liz) kept my spirits up as we arrived at our plot.Because my vehicle was the “plot car,” my crew and I arrived quite a bit before the others. Not being able to sit around–and not needing a drink, as it was 10:30 in the morning I was the designated driver–I set up a makeshift kitchen counter on top of a cooler.I had no part in choosing food for the day–we can give props to my friend Shannon for that one–but I did take it upon myself to begin setting up the spread. (Just because I didn’t make it, doesn’t mean I can’t presentit, right?)

Eventually we got a real table. I swear.

Despite the appearance of umbrellas during the 30 minute-or-so straight downpour, we stayed dry and happy under a tent that apparently belonged to the mayor of Charlottesville.*

*Still not really sure how that worked itself out. But it was awesome in name-dropability.How happy was I for the appearance of Flamous Falafel Chips?They paired beautifully with the Herb Hummus from feast!Shannon works at that fine gourmet specialty shop, so the tailgate spread naturally featured some tasty finds from the store.I’m not sure you want to know how much of this Desert Pepper Pinto Bean Dip I consumed.* And if you ever see this hot sauce anywhere, buy it! It’s some crazy mix of chili and sesame deliciousness.

*Let’s just say, I was dipping so deep into the jar that my fingers got beany.I had actually packed a salad and some Pineapple Cil-avocado Dressing [Slash] Dip to consume in lieu of the cheese, charcuterie, and pork BBQ I knew would be unveiled throughout the day……but I consumed so many veggies and pieces of fruit–and falafel chips–that I was stuffed to the brim.*

*Broccoli has a way of doin’ that to ya…

[Let’s just say, I really needed this kombucha when I got home. :)]

–But, wait, Sarah…I’m confused. You said you ended up in a land of drunken craziness. It looks like you had a really fun time to me!–

For the most part, I did. It was great to see some old friends (including some in town from Austin!), set up a tailgate, and be “mother hen” to everyone around me–including the random guys who tried to steal our food that were so intoxicated I forced them to drink a glass of water each before sending them on their way.

But I also sent a text during the day that read: “I am sad for the state of humanity.”

Am I getting old in that I find so much drunkeness and people being carted off in police cars or on stretchers because they can hardly stand up rather repulsive? Or that it made me want to cry to be watching girls in very inappropriate clothing for the weather slip and fall in mud because they can’t stand up straight? And the TRASH! Oh my goll, y’all, there was so much trash everywhere…

I don’t know where this litle rant came from, but the whole day really disturbed me in a way that I didn’t expect. I’ll take my tailgates away from the drun-dergrads and obliterated alumni from now on, thank you.

The mug of tea I so desperately needed at the end of the day supported me: “Be proud of who you are”? I guess I’m proud to be an old party-pooper.

P.S. I also ate this salsa. It was really good.

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Maria May 2, 2012 at 1:16 am

You are not an old fart, I am. B & I rarely drank in college (he has never had a sip!) and were nice enough to be the DDs for all our friends. I believe it was my Junior year, after getting calls at 2am every Friday and Saturday to pick up their sorry tushes that I put a stop to it. I also started going to bed at 11pm so I could wake up early to make muffins. We would have made awesome roomies.


Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count May 2, 2012 at 6:44 am

I agree with you, Sarah…I can’t deal with a lot of noisy drunken foolishness. However, it looks like you had a great time in spite of it all. But then it Always looks like you have a good time! 😉


Alex May 2, 2012 at 7:29 am

If you ever want to go to a move civilized (aka less drunk) steeplechase we can take a trip to Maryland and go to Hunt Cup. It’s my favorite race, the fences are crazy high, and we can sit with the subscribers. :)


Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean May 2, 2012 at 7:34 am

falafel chips! want!


Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table May 2, 2012 at 7:58 am

Awwww! I was in a similar situation Sunday. What a drag it is getting old and responsible… :)

At least the food was good! I want you to be in charge of my next football tailgate.


Tricia @ Saving room for dessert May 2, 2012 at 8:25 am

My little girl is all grown up. It’s rather disgusting to see such foolery. No need to get that wasted. I’m sure they were feeling a sense of regret the next day. But hey you look adorable!


Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli May 2, 2012 at 9:07 am

I must be a party pooper as well, because all that you described started to make my eye twitch…funny how people grow out of that let’s-get-drunk-and-lose-every-single-inhibition-we-ever-had stage at different times in life. I grew up in a VERY small town and moved away once I started college. It’s only about a 30-45 minute drive from where I live now, but I honestly don’t visit very much because it seems almost all my old high school friends are still stuck in that stage…even the ones with children!!

At least you had a nice spread…and you didn’t get puked on, that’s a plus! 😉


Brittany (Healthy Slice of Life) May 2, 2012 at 9:19 am

Green rain boots just scream SARAH. I love them.
And I’m with you on the over-drunkedness. I’d be lying if I said that I’ve never been ‘that girl’ but now I look back and can’t understand it.


Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers May 2, 2012 at 9:26 am

Awww, those poor sweeties falling does sound pretty sad. I remember college days of Carolina Cup. Most of us never even saw a horse.

Way to rock the boots n’ hat – good call!


Miranda @ Miranda's Munchies May 2, 2012 at 10:37 am

Nice post! And don’t feel old just because you aren’t a fan of drink until you drop! There are wayyy better things to do when your sober! Like write rant posts about drunks people 😉 But in all seriousness, I think I feel old because I’d rather have the kambucha than alcohol any day!!!


Healthy Living Val May 2, 2012 at 11:22 am

Props for the attempt to class up a tailgate! Despite the rain and drun-dergrads, food did what it does best — bring people together.


Katie @ Nutrition in a Peanut Shell May 2, 2012 at 4:41 pm

No, I think that just makes you sane- not old! Seriously, I’m not even {close} to legal drinking age yet, but I cannot stand to see severely inebriated people..I actually just want to get away from them as fast as possible, with their heavy breathing and gross breath. It all goes back the the {new} golden rule: moderation!

Minus the drunk people, it looks like an awesome time :)


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