Good morning friends,
I just got home after being on the road for 3 weeks, and after covering ground from South Texas to Nebraska it really leaves a lot of windshield time to think. I received a phone call while I was on the road from a dear friend that she had finally met a cowboy. He was the man of her dreams by the way her voice sounded, and I could tell she was already planning the wedding in her imagination. Well, hold your horses little darlin'. First off, I better explain I am no expert, but a man that makes his living horseback is a different kind of breed. I could tell she was already wrapped up in getting to ride horses daily, and how she could win his heart with her cooking skills, and while I was trying really hard not to giggle I just couldn't contain myself any longer.
She spoke of how they were going to go check pastures that weekend, and couldn't contain her excitement. She wasn't use to riding very often, but again she felt she had watched enough John Wayne movies, and the Pioneer Woman cooking show that she could tame this mythical creature that some call a cowpuncher. Oh, and she loved dogs! So she figured the dogs that trots beside him surely deserves enough treats, and she'd get use to the idea that his cow dog was now camped out on her fine italian leather furniture.
So it's finally the weekend, she's been prepared all week. She makes the phone call to me frantically. "Laine, what do I do?" Well, like I said I'm no expert but there's a few things I've learned while photographing this lifestyle. Some of my best friends make their living horseback, and I'm lucky enough to get to tag along to photograph, and also do some under cover investigation for these sweet little town girls that think it's romantic to date a cowboy.
Step 1: Did you read my blog on IF he saddles your horse? You didn't? Well here's the link:
Step 2: This is where I can really help you out. Read below.
So here you are little darlin', it's finally the day. You've been looking forward to this day all week. Now in his mind you have to remember you are just free help. He sees this as spending time with you, but he also enjoys not having to get the gate. So, in his mind you are just free help. Do not get your feelings hurt, and just remember everything is a test but don't you dare whine!
- So here you are in the barn. He grabs his extra working rig because it's the only one that the stirrups will go up high enough to fit your shorter legs (compared to his 40" inseam)
-Little darlin' you pay close attention right now. If that horse is jumping around, snorting, and has a big hump in its back, you just turn around and walk out of that barn. He does not think very highly of you. He is just using you to put miles on a green colt and although you may be able to handle it you will know in that exact moment where you stand, and you don't need that kind of negativity in your life, ha!
- But if he grabs that ol' fat wooly gelding that has a few scars on him, has a soft eye, and walks with a slow waltz to the barn. You can rest easy...
You see that ol' gelding has been around a time or two, he's worn many of wet saddle blankets, and helped keep him out of many of wrecks. He's been sure footed when it was questionable, and he's been solid to work the rope when an ol' mad tiger strip momma wouldn't cooperate. He's not just another using gelding. This one has been hauled many of miles, and has paid his dues. He's had more conversations with this horse than any phone call he's ever made. Little darlin' if he pulls out that ol' trusty bay, you can rest easy. He already respects you, and thinks highly of you.
I've traveled quite a few miles, and ridden with some really great cowboys. Most of the time they just throw a horse in so I can ride around and photograph. I guess you can really call that trust. I like to tell funny stories from the road, and capture a lifestyle that I'm passionate about. I've called many of these guys that make their living horseback great friends, and the first to call if I need something. So ladies, if you don't have a sense of humor don't ever try to date a cowboy. If you're wondering how he feels about you, or wondering if there should be a second date than pay close attention to the type of horse he saddles for you. If its trusty ol' bay, you can be reassured you can accept his offer next weekend for Fiiiiine dining at Wataburger.
P.S. Don't order anything too expensive off the menu because day wages are slim, and he's had his eye on a new Kerry Kelly bit for quite some time. :)
Good luck out there ladies! Sit easy on ol' bay because he just pulled him out of retirement , don't forget your sense of humor and you'll be just fine!
This is a passion I have for capturing the true working cowboy & the western lifestyle through the lens & stories. This is a lost art & a dying breed of the working man. As technology has begun to take over, many little things have been taken for granted. It's about riding for your brand, the loyalty in a handshake, and the power of a man's word. Most of my photographs have been taken off horseback capturing the "working" cowboy during their normal everyday life. They're not posed, They're not staged, just raw and real through my experiences during sunrise on the back of a horse riding through green pastures.