Horse shopping the colombian way- Part I
What has happened before:
We found a horseman who would like to sell us his horses. Even more his mule :D
The horses are a decent price , the mule is extremely expensive.
We agreed on a date so we could test the horses during a ride.
That ride was yesterday. Once arrived at the farm, we looked at the horses and of course they presented us the mule- again, we keep repeating that we can't buy it, but
- " that mule is really perfect for your trip"
-"we still can't buy it, its like 4 times as much as we can spent"
-"but it is a very good mule, very strong, it can carry your luggage and you can ride it"
-"it's not that we don't like it, we just can't buy it
-"look how strong and tall it is. It is a very good mule"
- yeah, but we can't buy it
Anyway, of course the mule came on the trip so we could see how good it was (in case we change our mind about our financial situation :D) And even another mule came, so we could compare and see HOW WELL the first one behaves.
So we took off, us two on the horses we wanted to buy and the two colombians on their mules. Of course there was a beer before takeoff.
Up we went into the hills above Bucaramanga, not knowing what was expecting us :D We rode on a dirt road that was winding up the hills, passing by small houses and villages.
After an hour ride, we stopped to take a break. The time we attached the horses outside, one of the Colombians had already ordered beers. We started talking and dancing, while the night fell around us. When we got back on the horses, we thought we would start heading home, but we continued on our dirt road uphill. A couple of minutes later we figured out, that the colombians were going to meet some friends in another bar. We started to understand what "going for a ride" in Colombia meant….
The next bar turned out to be a horse-show bar. On either side of a walkway there were tables where you could eat and drink while watching proud stallions prancing back and forth like models on the catwalk, showing off their very best "paso fino", the fourth gait of colombian horses which firstly is really comfortable and secondly looks very elegant. They were obviously for sale and most likely very expensive, judging by the huge, fancy cars on the parking lot.
1 hour and 3 beers later (we didn't even have the time to finish them before there were new ones coming), we were on our way back. The friends followed us in their car to make sure we got home safely and had some light (of course we didn't take our fancy PETZL headlamps as we didn't quite expect this extensive night trip).
Half an hour later we came by a horse-farm. Of course we stopped. And of course beers appeared on the table faster than we could blink (we were already past being surprised at this point). And of course some dancing. We obviously took too long to finish the first beers before new ones appeared.
"Dont worry about finishing them, just have the cold ones first"
And hop we were back on the way. Luckily the horses are really amazing, very well behaved and comfy, our riding style was surely not the best anymore.
Another quick stop, an we had a bottle of aguardiente with us, and the rest of the trip we took little breaks, so that the colombians could serve shots.
Sometime in early morning, we were finally back at the stables and surprisingly all of us still managed (more or less) to take away the saddles and clean the horses.
What a trip! The horses were great, and so was the mule. But we are still not going to buy it ;)