For some reason, I woke up before the 6:30 alarm went off. I spent a few minutes taking dogs out, feeding cats and reading a chapter over a cup of coffee. I had been anticipating rodeo day, so maybe that’s why I was earlier than the clock.
Since I was at the fair grounds by 7:40, I had time to observe some of the preparations. There were a lot of riders in the arenas warming up. One big space had been divided in half to be able to have two events going on at once. Goats, horses and steers were unloaded and penned for the events. I had time to roam around and snap some pictures. There were plenty of beautiful horses on the premises, that’s for sure.
Sometime after 8, someone in the crow’s nest started the country music blaring. I could almost feel a subtle change in the atmosphere as the riders (and horses) made the mental shift from warming up to competing. The power of music is amazing.
I was all set to work one of the gates for goat tying. Things started close to on time at 8:30. Girls were making good time on their runs—some of them at least. If I tried to dismount while the horse was still running, I’d end up flat on my face. Kudos to these talented, determined kids!
Rain was starting to fall, but the show went on for a bit. As soon as the lightning started getting serious, the announcer told us all to take cover. I didn’t need to hear it twice; people scattered and put their horses in the trailers to wait out the storm. Many were ready for rain—yellow-clad people were all over the place! Even saddled horses had rain slickers on because, as my friend Laura said, “Nobody wants a wet bum!” After about an hour, the rodeo events started again. The goat tying event had 37 girls lined up to compete, but it went by quickly. My gate time was up before I knew it.