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  • Henri de By


We all sometimes need to do a reset. To banish from our mind — if only for a moment — all the problems that have accumulated over time, so that we can see with fresh eyes what attracted us to someone or something in the first place. To see, again, that what made us fall in love.

It is what happens in the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. About a couple, played by Kate Winslet and Jim Carrey, who after a painful breakup erase each other from their memories, only to meet anew and fall in love again. So, maybe, just like in that amazing film which managed to combine romance, science fiction, comedy, and drama — for which its screenwriter Charlie Kaufman won an Oscar — it is time for a reset at the beginning of the new polo season.

After all, polo has been, and still is, facing several crises at once. In Argentina, the discussion is raging about how many teams to allow in the Argentine Open. A debate that will pale in comparison to the battle about the proposal next to limit the handicap of the only tournament in the world where 40-goal teams play each other. In the US, a lack of teams in the high- goal caused the American polo association to drop the top-level form 26 to 22-goals for next season. For the three most powerful American patrons reason to set up their own 26-goal tournament, parallel to and in defiance of the USPA. While in the UK polo has been plagued by the visa crisis and the loss of 20 percent of its patrons last season, a trend many fear will continue.

So, let’s wipe all these problems from our mind — if only for a moment — and realize that in just a few more weeks we will be running down the field again, feeling the satisfaction of your horse reacting almost instinctively, of that unmistakable sound when we hit the ball full-on. That, if you are lucky enough to be playing polo on an English summer afternoon, all problems can wait. Or, as the poem Eloisa to Abelard by Alexander Pope, on which that film’s title was based, says:

How happy is the blameless vestal's lot!

The world forgetting, by the world forgot.

Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!

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