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On John Wayne’s Trail

The rain was coming down in buckets as I made my way out to the ranch this afternoon but I was determined to ride despite the weather. I reasoned that  cowboy originals and mail carriers and the cavalry and Oblate missionaries and indigenous travellers and explorers-of-old all saddled up and headed out regardless of weather conditions so who was I to be deterred by a mere smattering of rain.

Deb was sweeping out stalls when I arrived and asked if I wanted to haul to the indoor arena.  “No ma’am”, said I. “No indoor riding for this mountie.”  Though when I started to pull on my polyester rain-proof biking pants Deb looked at them askance.  “Traveller might get spooked by that material. It makes a noisy schwish-schwish sound and reflects light in an unnatural way.”  She pointed instead to a stiff, weathered, leather, full body-length, riding coat hanging on a hook amidst the harnesses and horse blankets.

img_0709It looked to me like something John Wayne might have worn on the big screen back in the day.

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With some regret I didn’t have the chance to try out the all-weather get-up for just as we were finishing tacking up the horses, the skies broke.  “It’s a miracle!” noted Deb.  And indeed, it did seem to have cleared just in time to see us on our way: out the gates, through the soggy fields onto the forested trail at the back of the property.

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The afternoon ride was bliss.  The forest still arrayed in the yellow hues of fall and high dike trails overlooking flooded cranberry fields.

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We rode, talked, trotted a bit, checked out the swollen Allouette River and looked out over the great sprawling valley floor toward the mountains, and in that two-hours out on the land everything that may have seemed wrong with the world, was righted again.

 

 

One comment

  1. Susan Kennedy says:

    I love the way you describe your feelings and all I have to do is close my eyes and I see it and I feel it too. John Wayne is an American hero and the perfect cowboy. Deb, is our MR. Cowgirl and she lives the lifd style.

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