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Friday, December 20, 2013

RANCHO REYES Chapter 10 A New Life for All


Raising Arabian Horses
courtesy photobucket.com
 
It was almost too much to take in.  So much had happened the last week.

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 them disturbed.  

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 to them.

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 border.

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.”

To be Continued

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