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poor beasts and dumb beasts

On the second rainy day in Zacatecas, I go, at the urging of Ernesto, the manager of the Hostel Villa Coloniel, to a rodeo. My feelings about the venture are very mixed.

The first thing I discover is that arriving on time in Mexico is not necessarily a good idea.

An empty stadium: clearly arriving on time in Mexico isn't necessarily the best idea.

The rodeo is a university event and I have been informed by Ernesto that only the very rich can afford to participate in rodeos in Mexico – it is the the unique preserve of privileged hacienda kids. Real cowboys, it seems, have no place here.

After a while, boys in fancy clothes – who, it is true, bear absolutely no resemblance to the people we have been seeing on horseback on the rural back-roads we have been traversing – trickle into the arena and start to warm up.

A fancy cowboy practising quick stops...

... while another sharpens his lasso skills.

Eventually, a somewhat unenthusiastic audience begins to fill the empty stadium.

Waiting for the action to begin.

Even the announcer doesn't seem terribly excited...

... but things finally get underway...

...even if an air of excitement...

...is still somewhat lacking.

After the teams perform a rather dreary set of exercises on their horses the real action begins. The competitors attempt to lasso a horse in the first event – a feat nobody manages to achieve.

Swinging that lasso...

... to no avail.

The unsuccessful horse lassoing is followed by a second event in which the cowboys chase down a cow, seize it by the tail and then with some tricky leg manoeuvre, hurl the poor beast to the ground.

Chasing down a cow...

... and throwing it to the ground.

Again...

...and...

...again.

Poor beasts...

...going down...

... but a few determined ones...

... manage to get away.

I tire of it all and leave long before it is over.

{ 3 } Comments

  1. John and Doris | February 26, 2010 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

    Anna — We continue to follow your travels, and we wish the best of luck on the next leg as you travel solo. — D & J

  2. DV Rogers | March 2, 2010 at 1:44 am | Permalink

    Great photographs of Mexican cowboys..

  3. julie | March 5, 2010 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    I love your cowboy action shots – they tell a story better than words. Interesting your comment about traveling solo again and the kind of attention you attract from women and girls. You are more accessable on your own, I’ve found. Great that you are still so happy ‘in your work’. Will you buy or make some new bike carriers? Lots of love Julie xx

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