So we just couldn’t resist when we were invited to join friends at “The Bull Thing” in Eureka, MT this summer. Sitting outside under a beautiful Montana sky, socializing with friends, watching this rodeo event that draws crowds from all over the northwest…sounded perfect! It also sounded like a great opportunity to take pictures and share them with you.
Except for one thing – it is hard to take photos when your eyes are closed. The ones below I took before the event began – when all was calm…
Yes, you heard me correctly…I have this problem when it comes to suspense/thrills/chills, I close my eyes. Oh, I tried, mind you. As the cowboy was getting ready for the gate to open, sitting on top of a maniacal slab of prime beef that would not only violently whip him around, he’d come after him after he fell off, I had that camera in hand and was ready. But when the gate opened and the bull and cowboy came flying out in a twist of dust, cycling like a tornado, bull snorting and spitting…I saw nothing.
Jim would tell you I always do this. When we watch a suspenseful show on our DVD player, as soon as the music gets eerie and the lights are dim, my eyes shut and he talks me through what is happening (don’t want to miss it!!). So it was at “The Bull Thing.”
I just can’t watch people get hurt or suffer, even in a movie (which is ridiculous, given it isn’t reality). This event isn’t a full rodeo – it is three solid hours of cowboy after cowboy hopping on the back of an animal that is ticked off and angry. What’s worse is whenever they fall off, the “homicidal cow” comes running after the poor guy with pointy horns ready to skewer him.
Remember the old cartoon (was it Bugs Bunny?) where he was a matador and would slap the bulls face, then the bull would sharpen his horns, etc. (by the way, I don’t close my eyes during cartoons…I have to draw the line somewhere)? Well THAT’S what it is like…the beast wants to get that rider.
HERE IS ONE PICTURE I LOVE – THE BULL CHASED ALL OF THE COWBOYS UP ONTO THE GATES BEFORE THEY COULD GET HIM OUT OF THE ARENA
One other problem with this event is that it is three hours of complete bull. I always loved rodeos, even as a little girl, but as suspenseful as the Bull Thing is, it is like watching a football game, which I find painfully slow and boring. The “ride” lasts, if they stay on, a whopping 8 seconds…then a 10 minute break until the next rider. The rodeo has different events like barrel racing, bronco riding, roping – it has many events, which mixes it up and keeps it interesting.
Finally, there was one more issue I’d forgotten. I’m six feet tall and metal bleachers packed with people create a problem – I can’t feel my legs. I had people in front, behind and on the side, yet my knees would have pushed into the shoulder blades of the person in front of me, so I had to sit sideways until I lost all feeling and my butt fell asleep, too!
So not sure I will attend next year, but there is nothing like being in Big Sky Country on a beautiful Montana evening….that’s no bull, I assure you!
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