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Hemingway Adventure

Marion, Montana

Kalispell, Montana, USA 
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Me and my pal, Pal. Bonding with a Palomino at the Hargrave Ranch.
Michael Palin - Hemingway AdventureEveryone’s still a little nervous when Randy shouts that he’s seen the errant cattle.

‘Michael, take the right and bring ’em round off the bank of that stream.’

Oh yes, thanks. Thanks a lot.

Of course I’ve done this many times, usually on my bicycle after seeing a John Wayne movie. Now that I’m actually on a real horse with real cows in the real West everything looks a little different. What the hell do I do if the beasts head straight for me, get out of control, or, enraged by a mosquito bite, start a stampede?

I needn’t have worried. The rebellious cattle number fewer than twenty, of which eight or nine are white, fluffy calves and the rest either nursing mothers or several months pregnant. It’s hardly a round-up, more like chasing a crèche. The attorney from Buffalo takes a tumble during the slow chase back through the pine woods, but on the whole, this bit of cattle action has an electrifying effect on the party. Having to ride instinctively, without thinking about riding, has calmed the nerves and turned us all into swaggering cowboys. Rick, here to celebrate his second wedding anniversary, was, like me, a quivering jelly two hours earlier, now he moves through the trees like a professional, occasionally shouting, ‘Come on, cattle!’ Or more threateningly, ‘Hey! Cattle!’
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Hemingway Adventure
  • Chapter: Marion, Montana
  • Country/sea: USA
  • Place: Marion, Montana
  • Book page no: 246

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