16 August 2012 Rodeo!
We’ve been having a great time in Aspen for the past few days, and I already have tons of posts worth of photos. Tonight, however, we went to the Snowmass Rodeo, which was just about the most quintessentially American thing that I think I could have exposed Genbo and Zoe to. In fact, at the moment I feel like any part of the US that is NOT a rodeo is somehow just not authentically American.
Today was breast cancer awareness day at the rodeo, which was why all the cowboys were wearing pink shirts. This guy below was in charge of opening the gates for the practice session, which took place for about an hour before the main events. Two cowboys would get into gates, and then a calf released. This man waited a few seconds and then opened the gates, which he straddled with such an easy air of confidence that I can only assume he won every single rodeo himself between 1960 and 1970.
One cowboy lassoed the calf’s head (which seemed relatively easy), while the second was charged with lassoing the rear hooves, which had a much higher failure rate. This was one of the events of the rodeo, which apparently is like a sport with lots of prize money on the line. This cowboy below struck me for wearing the most flamoyantly pink shirt of the lot, along with a pink-rhinestone studded belt and rhinestone-studded glasses. I figured that if you’re going to be that flashy, you had better be good, and indeed he managed to lasso the rear hooves of the calf with an easy nonchalance that completely escaped everybody else.
Below are some more shots of the calf-lassoing competition. I was experimenting with trying to capture a sense of motion.
I can’t believe we’ve been in Minnesota for almost a full month. The kids have been going to camp, Maki to work, and I have been enjoying some down time in the States. This weekend we’re off to Aspen.
This past weekend we decided to make the most out of Minnesota while we still could, so in the morning we visited Minnehaha Falls. This park is literally 5 minutes from our house, and has (what I’ve been told) is the highest urban waterfall in the US. I was also advised to make the most out of the surrey bikes they had for rent, as well as the fish place on top of the falls. I forget who gave it to me, but all of this proved to be good advice.
Now, backing up a little, here are a couple pictures of Genbo and Zoe playing on the unused train tracks, right next to an old train station, at the entrance to the park.
Zoe taken by a sudden bout of Melancholyfull exif
I wasn’t expecting much, but the falls really were quite impressive…
These surrey bikes were lots of fun. They could seat either 3 or 6, and since only Maki’s and my legs could reach the pedals, we opted for the former. Genbo sat between us and Zoe sat in the basket up front. Those suckers were heavy, and by the time we had circled the falls Maki and I were tuckered out.
After our ride we at at a place called Sea Salt, a delicious restaurant that featured New Orleans-style fish foods.
After lunch we went to play on the swingsets, with a certain daughter demanding a ride there…
On our way back Genbo stopped for one las look at the falls.
Here he is on the bridge above the falls. The actual precipice is about 15 feet away, so even if he fell he wouldn’t have been swept over.
But that doesn’t keep mom from worrying just a little bit…