Horsing Around

By Diana Bosse for Loveland Beacon

LOVELAND, OH (April 9, 2024) – I’ve wanted to attend a polo match since watching Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. 

Lounging at the Polo match with appropriate hat in place (Diana Bosse)

Of course, I wanted to attend the match with Richard Gere, but attending with Steve and a dozen or so friends today worked out just fine. It was a perfect afternoon to cross yet another item off the old bucket list.

Most of my pals knew very little about the Sport of Kings.  As a matter of fact, most of us were more familiar with drinking Little Kings.  It didn’t take long to catch on.  We knew the two most important rules:

  1. Women must wear a hat or fascinator
  2. Refer to #1

A player and his pony in action during Polo match (Diana Bosse)

I discovered polo is faster paced than baseball, easier to follow than football, has more flattering uniforms than basketball, less violent than hockey, the fans are better dressed than soccer, and you don’t get a kink in your neck like you do watching tennis. There are six “innings” called chukkers and at half-time instead of running to the concession stand or restroom, everyone runs onto the field to stomp the divots, being ever so careful not to stomp on the steaming ones.  In lieu of switching out players, the horses are switched out every so often since they’re the ones getting the real workout. 

A close-up look: player, pony and polo mallet

 The players themselves don’t need to be as fast as Usain Bolt, but they do need to be focused.  I have complete appreciation for anyone who can hit a little ball with a little stick while racing full speed on the back of a not-so-little animal.  I can barely hit a golf ball while standing completely still.

At the end of the match, we all agreed we’d be back next year. Until then, the closest we will probably get is the Ralph Lauren store at the outlet mall.