Friday, March 27, 2015

Bull Riding, Mexican Style

When we were in Mexico we would spend many days just driving in our car through the mountains looking for small towns to get a feel for the local culture.  On one of our day trips the road we were traveling on came to end in the small town of La Trinidad.  We noticed a lot of people in the streets and plenty of old pickup trucks parked everywhere.  We pulled over and got out to look around and soon realized we came upon a big community event, bull riding Mexican style.  The people were crowded around an old outside arena waiting for the start of the rodeo.  Bands were playing and food was being served from vendors.  We worked our way into the crowd and up near the fence to see the show.  This particular bull rider must have been the crowd favorite because he got a big roar of applause when his name was announced.  I have watched professional bull riding for many years and have always enjoyed the sport.  This guys ride was the first time I had ever seen someone ride a bull without holding on.  It was a magnificent ride and the crowd went wild with cheers and applause.  I was impressed with his talent and thought to myself that he could have been a very competitive rider here in the States.  We spent the afternoon there watching different Mexican cowboys take their chances at bull riding, but non came close to this guy's ride.  We ate food made friends with the locals and had a very memorable day.
We made a few more trips to this small town afterwards and came across a man working in his opal mine.  He took us through his mine and later we had dinner with him and his wife and bought some of his opals.  You never know what a small back country road can take you to until you get out and explore.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Toiling under the sun

If you  have ever spent any time in Mexico you have seen hard work going on all around you.  People there work hard just to provide a simple lifestyle.  Our lives are full of abundance when compared to the daily lifestyle of the average person in Mexico.  Here we live thinking about what we can obtain in our future while they ask themselves how can I feed my family today.  One thing I noticed about the Mexican people, is that they work hard six days a week, but they value celebrating life with festivals, food, and surrounding themselves with bright colors just as hard as they work. 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Helping Hand

When we travel in Mexico we always stop in the small towns and walk around and find a little restaurant to have lunch.  It is a good way to sample some of the local fare of the region we were traveling in.  Many of the restaurants have open fronts and the cooking takes place on a grill as you enter.  It is a good way to see what is being cooked and ask a few questions of the types of food offered.   We enjoyed the many meals we had in Mexico except for ones with chicharron.
We noticed that many in the of small towns we would see the owner of the restaurant provide a free meal to an elderly person.  It is common practice in some regions to give a helping hand to the elderly and provide them a good meal each day.  I made a photo of this little lady in a little mountain town while we were having lunch.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Cross in the Desert

While traveling in southern Arizona I came upon an old cemetery out in the middle of nowhere.  It was strange to me that a cemetery existed where there were no towns around.  I drove up the washed out gravel road to the entrance gate and spent an hour walking around and photographing the location.  It was apparent that these were old and simple grave sites.  Some of the sites had been attended to with faded artificial flowers and a few keepsakes spread around on the headstones.  This is rugged and barren land that is hard to support life.  I wondered what these early pioneers did to survive in such an arid place.  Most likely there were mining operations with a town in the area an one time.  The West is full of old an abandon mining towns, some still standing an other completely gone except for a few rusted out pieces of equipment laying around.  I made this photograph on an extremely hot July day.  There were numerous thunderstorms moving through the area and I could see them coming for miles away.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Tumacacori Grave Site

I have visited the area south of Tucson Az. a number of times to photograph the Tumacacori Mission.  The first mission built on this site was constructed in 1691 by Father Kino, and the current mission was constructed in the mid 18th century.  There are numerous old grave sites in the courtyard from people who worked and lived at the mission.  This mission is now part of the National Parks system and is  wonderful place to spend a day looking at the structures built by an old civilization and learning about their culture.  I made this image around noontime in intense sunlight.  I compressed several different exposures together to render some detail in the harsh shadows.