Early Morning At The Santa Fe Ranch, TexasTuesday, August 02, 2011
Friday night at St. Edward’s High School was special. I was a boarder and this meant that on Saturday morning there would be no 6:30 bell waking us up for prayer and breakfast. It meant I could watch my favourite TV programs including Have Gun – Will Travel knowing that in the morning I could glory in the luxury of staying in bed. But four years of getting up early taught me that there are things that happen in early morning that are special and one can miss them if one oversleeps.
Oversleeping on Saturday mornings was a luxury that in my mid 30s I could no longer indulge. It was about that time (until I outgrew them with age when I was around 59) that I began to get horrible and debilitating migraines. One of the triggers was oversleeping on a Saturday after a week of work and stress.
This morning I woke up at 9:30. I had to get up in the middle of the night to placate a right knee arthritis pain. Pain killers drug me and keep me sleeping beyond what I consider adequate sleep. Fortunately oversleep no longer triggers migraines and I was able to function normally for the rest of the day.
During our week at Mike East’s Santa Fe Ranch I rarely overslept and in most days I tried to get up before I would hear Mike’s spurs jangling down the hall at precisely 6:30.
One day I got up at 5:45, shaved and I was out the door but not before turning on the large chandelier in the equally large living room. I went out the kitchen door and I was enthralled by the quiet and the mist that seemed to be coming up at the near horizon. The wild turkeys surprised me with their chatter (or is it gobbling?) and the fact that they were sleeping up in the trees. It was amazing to see how well they can fly when they have to.
It was still a bit early for el Quineño to be up and sweeping the garage floor, feeding the many little dogs that Mike has to keep the snakes in check. Quineño is called that because he worked at the King Ranch for many years. He is a tad younger that I am and his approach to life is a much happier one than mine. He is always smiling and when he saw Rebecca this year he immediately told me how much she had grown from last July. He told me, “Rebecca es una señorita!”
After snapping my iPhone I went inside in time to say to Mike, “Buenos días.” We were ready to get into the truck with El Borrado, to go and get a couple of horses for the trailer. We were headed for La Mula for a day’s work of cutting of the testicles of young bulls. This was an experience I had had as 9-year old back in the province of Corrientes. It was to be as equally brutal, and more so because of the 40 plus heat, but this time I had the knowledge that some things are necessary if we want to enjoy an occasional Quarter Pounder.