A Cattle Drive and Sequined Saddle

Ft. Worth Texas says they combine cowboys with culture–I sure hope the sequined saddle isn’t considered culture. Kitsch, yes. Culture, not so much.

If you want a cowboy experience, you can pack a lot in to a day.

  • mock cattle drive
  • obscene amounts of shopping
  • Tex Mex food that has quite a story
  • a museum dedicated to the life and liveliness of cowgirls
  • an amateur rodeo (tomorrow’s post)
  • and dancing at the world’s largest honky tonk; which is home to the sequined saddle.

I had a blast and slept like a baby by the time I got home at nearly 2:00 am.

Cattle Drive

The official purpose of this particular cattle drive was taking a herd to market at the Stockyards. With that heyday gone/hidden, it’s now replicated with period clothing and 15 steers. I have no problem with that. How often am I going to get this close to a steer?

They lumber. For the tourists or because that’s what they do? This is no running of the bulls. Slow-moving aside, these beasts are powerful. Click the pic to advance the slideshow.

Ride ’em Cowgirl!

A Cowgirl Museum, you say? Oh hell yeah. My feminism is brimming all the way to the lovely gift shop.

Cowgirl Musuem Logo

My feminism may have been on overload, but the actual cowgirls, not so much. It’s just a way of life. There’s work to be done: on the ranch and in the house. Matter of fact. As one said, “horses, babies, and blizzards.”

Photos show their faces, weathered like the ranching men; strong hands that tenderly help birth a calf; emotions that relate to the heifer’s pain in a way that the men can’t; cooking while still in chaps.

One woman said that other than her husband, her horse is her best friend. Others spoke of the unity of working with your children on a ranch or farm. The time together, the accomplishments, the lessons.

At the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma, I certainly learned a lot. But it was more functional than at the Cowgirl Musuem. Here, there was a relate-ability–getting it done because it has to be done; family and work; not the conquering of the West; but the continuity of today.

The Cowgirl Museum also has a hall of fame, and inducts women annually in these categories: artists and writers; champions and competitive performers; entertainers; ranchers and stewards of the land; trailblazers and pioneers. Whether or not there’s a Hall of Fame in your field, I think we all fall into these categories and can readily honor ourselves and friends accordingly.

What’ll You Have? Option A or B?

I was sent (commanded) to Joe T Garcia’s for TexMex. It’s the size of a city block and seats 2,000 people. It takes 50 servers, 70 busboys, and 60 kitchen staff in three kitchens to make this happen. But the fact that they only serve two dishes makes things significantly easier.

Margarita at Joe T Garcias

Was it good? Yes. It was. How do they make chicken sweet, but not at the same time? The queso appetizer was disappointing though. Up North they serve congealed messes that look like you nuked shredded cheese, so I was very excited to be in Texas. This tasted like Velveeta; which is not what I had in mind.

And BTW, there was a bridal reception here. No one batted an eye, while I couldn’t stop staring. Evidently this is a common occurrence. So common, that the restaurant has their own chapel. Ok, it was good, but it wasn’t THAT good.

Another grand story: rumor has it that Elvis (when he was still alive) wanted food catered to his hotel, but the restaurant declined 1. not knowing it was for Elvis, and 2. because they didn’t have enough dishes for both restaurant and the catering gig. Elvis got on phone and said he’d buy the extra dishes. Done and done.

The Texas Two Step

I don’t care how hard you’re working at being actualized; it’s tough to go to a bar alone. But I did it; because when they say Billy Bob’s is the largest Honky Tonk in the world, I’ve got to 1. find out what a honky tonk is; and 2. see what all the fuss is about.

Evidently a honky tonk is just a joint that plays country music. A disappointment, I’ll admit. The Texas Two Step is not. It’s a gliding dance; your feet barely leave the floor. And when you’re good, it’s a lot like swing dancing, with twirling and swirling and smiling. Some folks were naturals, some showoffs, some were long-time couples who moved together like water, and some were awkward. Didn’t matter; they had a good time.

I did get to dance, which was a delight. Although the intentions were not: he was making his date jealous. If I weren’t so heady from the chance to dance, I would have declined once his motives sunk in. But I was distracted by his hat–I had to make room for it, which I’ve never had to do before. And no, that is not a euphemism.

All this under the glitter of a sequined saddle; no disco ball here.

Sequined Saddle at Billy Bob's in Ft Worth

Photo courtesy of Flickr

Not sure what to wear? You’ll be good with cowboy boots. Evidently they go with anything: lace, shorts, short shorts, long skirts, mini skirts, silk, cotton or polyester; pattern, solid, or sheer; whether your skin is tattooed, freckled, or tan; over pants or under; they can be brown or any color; tooled or plain; heeled or flat; round toe or pointed–on both men and women. It’s like the Bubba Gump of footwear.

It was a good day: I learned, laughed, danced, unintentionally made someone’s date angry. Way to go Ft. Worth!

****

What’s the best dancing experience you’ve had?

Disclosure: Thank you to the Ft Worth Tourism Bureau for complimentary passes to the Cowgirl Museum and Billy Bobs.

2 Responses

12.07.12

Sometimes your writing makes me snort through my nose…the laughter just can’t get out fast enough. Luv the Bubba Gump. Guess you combined Forest Gump and Bubba.

Raye – Ok – so the character is Bubba from the movie Forest Gump AND there’s a restaurant called Bubba Gump. I got them sorta confused; I think the restaurant came after the movie?
Restaurant” http://www.bubbagump.com/
Movie quote and character: http://thinkexist.com/quotes/by/movie/forrest_gump/

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