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Note - most stories are fictional and do not refer to anyone in particular living or dead. True stories will say they are true!
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It was almost too much to
take in. So much had happened the last
Senior wasn’t someone to mess
with when he didn’t like a situation. Things didn’t end the way Juan expected, but
he was happy with the out come.
Not in his wildest dream did
he expect to retrieve his sister. He had
promised his mother he would try to find her but in all truth he never expected
to locate her.
Barbara wanted to keep her
wagon and she didn’t want anyone to mess with it. When asked how come she was so particular with
it she just said it was because of her personal things, and she didn’t want
Senior’s wife took Barbara
into her heart and insisted she call her Madre. The sister’s treated Barbara
like one of the family and she argued with them like one of the girls.
After the dust settled so to
speak the men folks sat down and began to talk seriously about the ranch and
the future. Raul spoke up and said the
future is plain. I’ll marry Barbara and
Juan can marry one of my sister’s. Surly
he can stand to be married to one of them although it is hard being the brother
Senior said, “Maybe we are
going too fast and should slow down. We
better first discuss the running of the ranch this next year. We need to do an inventory and see how many
cattle we lost.
I have some ideas about
raising some horses of the Arab lines from the stock we got from our friends
from the south. Their sudden demise left
the horses with the need of a new master.”
The rest of the day was spent
discussing securing and raising Arabian breed for riding and crossing them with
mustangs for cattle work. Senior asked
Juan where they could get some more of the top stock for breeding and how to
care for them.
Juan said, “We aren’t going
to settle this in one day for there are too many things to consider.
To start with the best place
for raising horses is in the south but they would be too exposed to rustling. The Arabian horses need more care than the
mustangs that pretty well take care of them selves. They require better feed than some of the
other breeds, but the return will bring several times the money when they are sold.”
Pablo and Raul said, this is
all too complicated for us, we will stick to the cattle business for they will
either make it or not.
Juan said, “There is some
truth in what you say but is there a market for the Arabian horses and they can
be a terrific money maker.”
Senior said for Raul and
Pablo to concentrate on the cattle. “The
next thing on the agenda is agriculture. We need more winter food for the stock. We have plenty of river bottom land to raise
hay but will need new equipment to be successful.
This brings us to the running
the Hacienda it self. It is time for
someone to begin to prepare to take over the responsibilities which are many
and lastly back to where we started about the horses. Okay Juan, where and how do we get the Arabians?”
Juan said, “First we have to
go where the horses are and that is on the property my family used to own. We will need a hundred breed mares and a half
dozen or more studs. We will want to
drive them all the way here so we must have some experienced wranglers who are
handy with both rifles and six guns, not just some cow punchers.
Lastly, payment; the people
won’t sell them so we will steal them. This
is the way my family lost them, they were stolen from us.
It will take twelve days to
get from where they are to the ranch here. There are some dry runs where there is no
water. My plan is to start two weeks
earlier hauling water. We will have to build
troughs for twenty five horses to drink at a time.
This many will be manageable
and can be done in less than an hour. Afterwards we will destroy the watering
places in case someone is following us. The
last two days travel will be without stopping until we reach the river at the
border. There we might need to have a
few rifles in position to discourage anyone from following us across the
There are two options for the
biggest hurdle. We can try to bribe the Federales
or drive a small herd to the border and give them to the Mescalero’s for safe
passage through their land. I favor the
last method for the Mescalero’s hate the Mexicans and I’m not sure we could
trust the Federales once they have our money.”
Senior said, “This is a good
start. We will continue our discussions
tomorrow but tonight we will have celebration.”