Monday, July 30, 2012

Cowboy Up!

Playing a bit of catch up here folks, but last weekend saw me at the Orangeville RAM Rodeo, part of the RAM rodeo tour that sweeps its way across most of eastern North America each year. What a show!!
Friday (the 20th) was my Birthday, and with a lil birthday money in a card I treated myself to the rodeo. Both Saturday and Sunday. It was awesome. I'm not sure I have a favourite event, they were all pretty impressive to watch. Certainly there were events such as barrel racing, pole bending, and even some of the roping events that I watched thinking, yeah, I could do that one day if I want. Other events... bronc riding, steer wrestling, bull riding, trick riding... well, hell no. It's good to know where one's limits are.
It was hot as sin that weekend, and the bleachers were in full sun. I didn't mind. Got a bit of a burn on the second day that's still itchy now, but at the time it was the furthest thing from my mind. I had Garth Brooks song Rodeo playing in my head all day both days.
It's the broncs and the blood, it's the steers and the mud and they call the thing a rodeo.
I have to say, it was the youth competitors that impressed me the most. One girl, a barrel racer, had her horse go lame on her the day before the rodeo. So she borrowed a friend's horse for the event. This horse is a cowy horse. Used for all kinds of roping classes, but never barrel racing. Has never barrel raced in it's life. The girl comes barreling out the gate, and the horse pulls up short. One of the reins has snapped, she's only got a nearside rein left, on this strange horse who doesn't barrel race. So doesn't this plucky 15 year old plaster a grand stand smile on her face, and with a little patience, a lot of leg and voice commands and one rein, gets the darn horse around each and every barrel and back out waving. I admire her courage. It may not have been the fastest time of the day, but I think that girl's a champ.
In the steer riding class, one young cowboy got bucked right off the horns of his steer, then stepped on by every foot as the beast ran over him. The announcer gave him the mic as he picked himself up. He groaned, then shook himself like a dog and said whew! that was a bit of a rough one! with a huge grin and a tip of his hat. Well... Helmet.
On the second day, in the adult, full size bull riding class, not one of the adults managed to stay on long enough to get a score. The very last competitor was a 15 year old kid, and didn't he stay on the full 8 seconds and get a score of 73. He's gonna have to do some growing to fit into that buckle he won I think.
All in all, I love the rodeo. I can't wait until October. The end of season championships are happening in Newmarket, and I'm gonna drag Andrew to watch it with me. He wont mind... I think.

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