Well, today I have a longer interview for you. Horse and Man went to Arizona’s Cowboy College to speak with them about their bond with their horses. Instead of asking about ridin’, ropin’ and gatherin’, I wanted to chat about the horses they run and what they meant to the wranglers there.
Wow. We spent an entire day there (even overnighted in the bunk house) and these folks are real horsepeople. It isn’t about domination or training, it is about partnership. I mean, think about it, if you are on the trail or out there in neverneverland, you need a mount you can trust. Rocco told us all about it. He seemed very genuine and I really enjoyed our time together.
First off, let me tell you about the Arizona Cowboy College. It was started by Lloyd Bridwell who was a rancher that was the son of a rancher who was the son of a rancher. You know what I mean here… Anyway, in 1989 he created the Cowboy College to impart his love of the ranching life. It caught on like wildfire and was featured in television and magazines everywhere. I’m sure the movie, CITY SLICKERS, took a piece from Lloyd.
Students came to Cowboy College from far and wide. One of those students was a businessman from New York, Rocco Wachman. Well, Rocco was so moved by his experience at CC, he left NY behind and became a part of the College. Now he is the head instructor… Rocco was our tour guide and interviewee.
But before we go to the video, I have to tell you the tragedy here. Lloyd Bridwell passed away unexpectedly in 2003. Honorably, his wife, Lori, continued on with Rocco’s help. The College was Lloyd’s dream and no one wanted it to end. So, with great strength and will power the Bridwell family and Rocco kept Cowboy College thriving. And thank goodness because our adventure there, and the adventures of everyone who takes the course, make memories that last a lifetime!
So, in this short video, Rocco speaks of his relationship with the horse and two horses in specific. The first horse he mentions is a mare who saved his life. Rocco was on horseback and lost his way in the wilderness during a snow storm. He was unconscious when they finally arrived back at the ranch. His mare had walked the last several miles with an unresponsive rider on her back. According to Rocco, he was suffering hypothermia. If she had given up, he would surely not be with us. You can see his admiration for her when we enter her pen…
The second horse we visit is his young Appy “son”. This is his favorite horse of all of them, even at the young age of just 5 years old. Rocco feels that this horse is the most honest and willing horse he has ever worked with or taught. You’ll see him interact with this sweet gelding. It is funny, this gelding was for sale but not really, if you know what I mean… I thought Rocco’s love for this boy was very endearing. It was great to see this Cowboy speak of his horse so lovingly.
I also want to add that the “Inspired” video I put up a few weeks ago was filmed at Cowboy College. The girl in the video is Lori’s student who rode through all those jumps at liberty. So, you see, they do more than Cowboyin’ at Cowboy College. Here is a link to the Inspiration video.
Here is a link to the You Tube site for Rocco’s interview at Cowboy College. I hope you enjoy our little visit with Rocco and the Cowboy College!
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