R is for…

rodeo 002‘r’ is for Rylie… my most favorite child.  Ever.

‘r’ is for Ropes Courses… my major and income since college.  It’s quite a different world out there now, what with every corner putt-putt having an ‘adventure course zip line time of your life’ offer. That’s not what I do.  I mean, I do fun and all… but it’s a bit more structured.  And, helpful.  And, funny.  Somewhere out there, Rebecca (an ‘R’ worthy of her own post) has a hard-copy photo of me doing my job. That photo, taken with me unaware, speaks volumes of how I work when I’m on the course.  I’m comfortable and in control.  There are few areas in my life where I can say that… um, almost none, in fact.  But ropes and ropes groups are my kind of thing.

rodeo 009‘r’ is for rodeo… Spanish for ’round up.’  There are few things I like better in life than going to the local county fair.  Our Kent County Fair has an award winning outdoor rodeo on the last night that we try never to miss.  Rodeos officially started in 1888 in Prescott, Arizona… but the grass-roots history goes back much further.  Ranching is hard work, and the cowboys/girls need a little release.  So, like anyone in their respective field, they turned their work into a competition.  “I bet I can get that calf safely on the ground before you can.” “I bet I can ride that wild horse longer than you can.” “I bet I can herd that lost steer back into the pen faster than you can.” And on and on. 

rodeo 015I’ve been going to rodeos ever since I can remember.  Being an adolescent in Texas pretty much guarantees you a seat in the arena every February and July, and I can remember spending high school Saturdays out at Johnny Boren’s ranch watching my friends-who-were-boys learn to ride bulls.  It’s just how it was.  But, there’s something more to it all… something I think that appeals to all people- country or not.  It’s the heart behind it.  The kids who ride for the first time… in their beat up boots and shiny new hats, carrying the American flag.  In the anthem that most people cry through because there are always soldiers down front, and it is a patriotic crowd.  In the cowboys, who paid their entry fee and hope to make enough just to ride on to the next town.  In the clowns… trained professionals who protect every rider from a wayward bull and give us laughs in between.  It’s the fact that people will sit on rickety stands in Lowell on a Saturday night and cheer on a hometown hero who’s famous for just one night.  And it’s my child, who is transfixed by the fringe and the horses and the lights. 

It’s just a down-home, simple good time.  I’m up for it anytime.

About texasnorth

TexasNorth is a little farm in Western Michigan. It's home to 5 chickens, 25 longhorn cattle, a coonhound (Banjo), 1 barn cat, a husband, and 3 ridiculously funny children. The mom of this zoo has been known to mow the lawn in a skirt and roast marshmallows after dark. View all posts by texasnorth

7 responses to “R is for…

  • sunday

    i was out of town so I am some posts behind. So happy about the baby and that everything is going well. Everything is just so scary right now! You are doing a good job. I loved school supplies too and organizing my backpack. That was my favorite. Everything was so perfect! I always had the same sandwich, chips, and fruit. Never the good dessert that I longed for and stared at other kid’s amazing Swiss Chocolate Rolls. Oh I can taste them. Maybe my pregnant self will go get some :). I do like a rodeo too, but I would much prefer seeing some hunter/jumpers. I am biased I guess. We aren’t as patriotic either, but it is still fun to see competition.

  • Jessica "Haynie" Carr

    oh look at her ponytail!!! love it!!!!

  • Jtp

    too cute! and I won’t tell baby #2 that you said Ry was your favorite . ever…… 🙂

  • annie

    i always thought you were way cool for your ropes course knowledge, its just not everyday that you meet someone with all that.
    i too love the rodeo and have for a long time, ever since i went to the clemson rodeo with my friend bridget and there was a dog with a monkey riding it pulling a wagon full of puppies, all this in the halftime show, wow.
    love that pony tail too.

  • stephanie

    I’ll never forget when I took my friends, visiting from Spain, to the Mesquite Rodeo outside of Dallas. You should have seen their faces the first time they saw a man come busting out of the shoot riding a bull. They were completely shocked. You don’t ride bulls in Spain…ever. Yet, you run in front of them and stand in a ring and wave capes in front of them and get close enough to stab a sword through their hear. For some reason, for the Spainards, all of that seemed like child’s play compared to what we do here. Strange.

  • stephanie

    umm, that’s “stab a sword through their HEART”…eh hem…

  • LoLo

    Sweet Steph! I was trying to figure out if you meant “heart” or “ear” (which you don’t stab but give away as a trophy).

    My favorite rodeo days were in high school when I was fortunate to get to know Lane and Kellie Frost (my best friend was from Quanah). We went to see Lane at the FtW Stock Show and got to sit with Kellie in the “family” section. I thought Lane was HOT, but I was TOTALLY obsessed with Kellie and wanted to be exactly like her. I vividly remember a few months later finding out that he had been killed. We were devastated! It took me several years before I would even consider watching the movie (8 Seconds). I too remember going out to some arena and watching my guy friends trying to ride. Those were the days for sure!!

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