Jun 8, 2012

Our shrinking bucket list.

When we started out on this trip, there were several things we wanted to see/do.  I'm not talking about particular states we wanted to go through, but specific things we wanted to do.

Our family's wish list for this trip:

  • Do something on the water. (Marci)  CHECK!  We got to dive/swim/play in a deep, fast river in Yosemite; and ride the jet boat on the Rogue River in Grant's Pass, OR.
  • Ride go-carts. (Abe)  CHECK!  We did that and more at Magic Mountain Six Flags in CA.
  • Go fishing. (Abe)  PARTIAL CHECK!  He got to fish while we were in Sedona, AZ.  It was cold and rainy, and he didn't catch anything.  Fly fishing in a mountain stream is in the plans.
  • Get some good food. (Angi)  CHECK!  We've had lots of that!  Good local stuff from several areas.
  • Rattlesnake round-up. (Sherri)  FAIL!  We scrapped this one after I had nightmares after going in the rattlesnake museum in Albuquerque, NM.
  • Do some white water rafting. (All of us)  Still in the works.
  • See some wildlife.  (Sherri) CHECK!  Elk, deer, eagle, herons, coyote, lizards.  Still holding out for some bear sightings!  Come on Yellowstone...don't let me down! :)
  • Rodeo. (Sherri)  CHECK!  
Knowing we would be out West, I really wanted to hit a rodeo.  I've been to lots of rodeos in my life (before marriage and living in the East), but my kids never have.  I love them!  Love the adrenaline rush, the horses, the skill of the cowboys, the huge bulls, the smell, (blue jeans and cowboy hats aren't bad either!) etc.  If you weren't raised in this type of culture/atmosphere, you probably can't relate.

 Just bear with me and pretend you can.

All along the Southwest, we kept our eyes and ears out for a rodeo.  No luck.  Most of them had already happened; like back in Feb. and Mar.  I had pretty much given up on getting to go to one.  Oh well.

As we were heading into Bend, OR, on Wednesday,Tim announced that he had plans for that evening.  A rodeo!  It was happening that night, in Sisters, OR, and best of the best....it was Extreme Bull Riding night!  My favorite!

Sisters is only about 15 minutes from the Johnson's.  Burnell went with us and suprised us by already having tickets on hold for us.

It was a bit chilly, but we were well equipped: hats, coats, ear muffs, blankets, gloves.

This guys hand got caught and he bounced along side the bull for a bit.  Scary Larry.

Eight seconds.  That's all the time you have to hang on.  That's not so long, huh?!  Yeah, right.  It's an eternity.  I think my entire life would flash before my eyes during the first second right before I fell off.  Actually, I would never make it out of the chute.

The fun thing about watching this crazy sport, is that it is so potentially dangerous!  There's always the chance that a cowboy will be not just bucked off, but possibly stomped on, kicked, butted, or gored.  I guess it's kind of like going to a hockey game.  There's always a chance a major fight will break out!
 I can understand if some of you are horrified.  But if it's in your blood, it's in your blood!  One of my kids labeled me as an adrenaline junkie the other day.  I don't know if that's entirely accurate, but I do know I like scary, risky things.  As long as I don't get hurt.

The clowns are always fun, too.  This guy was a nut!  Mr. Energizer Bunny.  I guess you have to be rather quick on your feet if you're messing around with 2 ton bulls.

This guy was close to making the 8 seconds, but alas...the bull won.

Off he goes!

Check this out!  See what I mean about how dangerous it is?  He was literally under the bull!  Within millimeters of being squashed like a bug!  Terrifying!

Another flying dismount.

And another.  Notice the guys climbing the gate.

This guys flew a long ways!  Landed on his head and neck.  Ouch.

Abe and Angi enjoying the rodeo and staying warm.

Tim, Conni, and Marci.

A half-time show.  This guy had 9 dogs doing all kinds of tricks.  They are all mutt-types and all rescue dogs.  Conni loved it, of course.

If I could do any job at a rodeo, it would be this one.  One of the gate openers.  One guy unlatches, the other one pulls it open with a rope. You're close enough to the action to see it all and be scared, but relatively safe from any real danger.  Relatively.  There's always a gate to climb!

So much fun.  I'm so glad we got to do this.  I got my thrills, no one died, my kids got a new experience, and we can all live happily ever after!

And best of all, Abe shows no inclination or interest in taking up bull riding.  Whew.  There's always that risk, you know.  Now the clown job....that's a whole different story.

Yee-haw and traveling on!


  1. You are an awesome blogger Sherri! It is fun seeing all that you are doing. I'd love to go to a rodeo on of these days!

  2. There is a great rodeo in Cody WY back door to Yellowstone, they do the whole show, bulls, horses, and a pig chase! Check it out