Monday, March 31, 2008
Sometimes I can't believe that this is actually, MY LIFE!!!
Lawdy, lawdy, where do I even start for real on this one. So essentially the last few weekends may have made to the top ten in my life, Im not even playin with ya'll, absolutely, cottin' pickin' ridiculous. We had almost a week off for what they call the "Semana Santa" here, basically a week to celebrate Easter, right on eh!!??!! My buddy Tomás, as always, brought my in on the inside with his "crew", and man what a group of jokers they are, again and we made a trip out to the country to a cottage that his buddy has. Im here to tell you what, it was if I had stepped back into the 19th century in the middle of South America. The wild part and beautiful is that we were only about 30 minutes outside of the city, dang I love Córdoba!!! This house, or cottage, or whatever you wanna call it, an Argentine dream in my eyes, was built back in the 1800´s so you can just imagine what the atmosphere was like. There are essentially no ceilings being that the cane roof is right there in front of you, though the headspace is something serious, (they have since put tin on top of it but the cane is still very visible inside), no electricity aside from a generator for minimal and specific use. All lighting at night was old school oil lanterns that hung throughout the hallways and sat on each nightstand in the room. Floors were old wood planks and the decor was obviously from some time ago. I felt as though someone that owned a museum decided to let us use it for a night to basque in all its historical glory. We passed the majority of the day just bullcrappin, drinking coffee, mate, tea and soaking up the tranquility of the mountain life. This cottage was smack dab in the middle of mountains, small mountains, more like hills, with a little creek out past the front yard. Old stone walls still erect absent of any form of mortar, just find the perfect rock for the perfect fit, built by the folks from waaaaaaaay back. The horses just run wild on the property, another amazing addition to the backdrop, as Im sure you can imagine. There is a family that lives on the property to maintain it and keep it up. (Sidenote, this isnt some old beater mountain cabin, this is a serious nice place and had to have been built by some wealthy folks back in the day, I found out later that the old boys Dad that owns the place has a wompus factory back in Córdoba, those folks have cheese, makes sense.) I buddied up with the Daniel, the father of the family and "gaucho" of the property. This guy was impressive. He showed me an unbelievable amount of things that he hade made from scratch, and by hand at that, for the horses on the property. Jenny, this comment is for you, every last flippin thing you can imagine for a horse, this guy had created and of serious quality at that. I observed a handful of the items, and you know me, examined each with the hawk in order to attempt to appreciated the intracy of each piece. Again make note, his approach was as "from scratch" as it could possibly be; from killing the animal, skinning it, preparing the sking, making the leather, and then refining each piece of leather for its specific application, and THEN, actually making the product....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!! This man was no doubt doing just what God had put him on this earth to do. One of only a few people I have met in my life that I could say that about, and a heart of gold on top of all that. Needless to say, after I got my mind blown by Daniel the Gaucho, as soon I set stepped back outside the smell of goodness took me over. All the food outside of the home here is prepared outside with wood or types of charcoal, NEVER with gas or electricity. This "horno de barro" looks like an igloo made of mud elevated about four feet off the ground. They cut up potatoes, onions, peppers, and placed 4 whole chickens inside with just a few embers, put they door, and let cook for hours, forever it seemed like. After I grew a beard and planned out the rest of my life, in Spanish, the feast was ready. Hallelujah, good lawd, great googly moogly!!!! Yall dont even know the experience of this meal. DANG!!!, I mean DANNNNNNNNNNGGGG!!!! Party in my mouth, my stomach had a seizure from the excitement. Best meal in Córdoba so far, hands down. You would think this is enough for an evening right, but oh know, the climax is yet to come. Daniel and Papi, the owners son, decide to round up six horses for us all to take a little night ride. When Tomás tells me whats goin down I dont really know what to say. Praise God I had taken a month of horse riding classes when I got here so I had just the teeniest, slightest little idea of what to do, bloody basics here folks, bare bones basics at that. So we all mount up and take off. Papi was on a Peruano that had the most unique stride Ive ever seen, cant describe it, get on youtube and check it. The coolest thing to see in person though, the beauty of the rhythm (I know you feel me on this one Jenny, hahaaaaa!!!!) Again, focus on the point that we re in the middle of nowhere and there isnt a single other house, horse, or person around besides us, just the moutains, dirt roads, good ole Argentine boys, a gringo, and a bright full moon without a cloud in the sky. This "cabalgata" lasted about three hours and every second was fenomenal. For some reason my horse just didnt feel like walking, so when there was an open stretch on a dirt road I let em' rip, and Im talkin rip!!! This is no other sensation in the world comparable to sitting on the back of a horse at such a speed in the middle of a cool fall night, praise God for that one!!! WHOOOOO!!! I cant even stand it, I just got excited all over again. WWWWWWWHHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! Once we reached the peak of the mountains we let the horses rest, let our legs dangle, soaked in the view. On one side of the mountain you could see the lights of Córdoba and on the other the city of Alta Gracia, absolut-ah-mentay spectacular. Thank you again Tómas, Im gonna owe you for a while on this one. The ride back was everything in reverse and just as enjoyable. What a weekend right!!!???!!!, wait until next time when I tell you about the "Rally" we went to this past weekend, again in the middle of the mountains, yall arent even ready!!!