By Brianne Goutal
Since I spend a lot of time traveling for competitions, many aspects of my life are constantly shifting. The food I eat, the scenery I view, even the bed where I sleep can change weekly. Because of this, I have certain constants that add a level of stability and comfort to my days. Below are the five things that I can never do without, that I always have with me on the road.
1. My barn manager Tatiana Gabrush. I rarely go to a show without her. She keeps me organized and always makes me laugh. Between driving our lorry and making sure the horses are perfect and ready to show, she really does everything behind the scenes. I’d be totally lost without her!
2. My dog Max. Max is my best friend and the ultimate road buddy. He likes to play and cuddle. Eagerly fulfilling his duty of keeping me company, he never lets me get bored or lonely and stays by my side almost every minute that I’m not on a horse.
3. My iPhone. In this day and age, everyone seems to have their phones permanently attached to them and, for better or worse, I am no exception. I keep so much information in my phone from contacts to photos; I’d die without my iPhone. It helps me feel connected to my friends and family even when I’m thousands of miles away.
4. Canned string beans. This may seem like an odd one, but I absolutely love canned string beans in Europe. They’re different than what we get in the United States, and they’re great on the go because I can eat them straight from the container. It’s a relatively healthy snack that’s easily attainable and delicious.
5. Perrier. As much as I love coffee, Perrier is my drink of choice. I always have one with me to keep me hydrated, so needless to say, I drink a lot of sparkling water!
No matter how much I travel, I always miss home to some extent. These five things help keep me grounded and make my busy lifestyle easier and more enjoyable. Whether it’s a kiss from Max, a belly full of my favorite canned string beans or a text from a friend back in New York, home doesn’t seem quite so far away.
About the writer: Brianne Goutal is a 2012 graduate of Brown University and professional show jumper. She made history by becoming the only person to win all four junior equitation finals.