Stampede, in an nutshell

Things have been busy. It’s been good busy, not without its overwhelming moments. I have this really great job. I don’t say this in a bragging kind of way. I’m saying it in a count my lucky stars kind of way. Sometimes you just have soak it up when things are good. Like when I rode a horse drawn carriage through downtown Calgary.Image

Or when I met Jason Glass, this year’s chuckwagon champion for a cup of coffee and a tour around his barn.


Or scrambling around at the beginning of the Parade to interview Commander Chris Hadfield and Mayor Nenshi on horseback. (Recognize that hand holding the microphone in the video? Yep that’s mine!)


You’d be walking around and be like, oh yeah, there’s a guy taking his llama for a walk.


My first Stampede experience was two years ago, just before we moved to Calgary and my impression was marked by a very drunk young man who took us under his wing and introduced us to all of his friends as his Texan cousins.

And there are a lot of very drunk young people to be sure (I should know, the legendary Cowboys tent was right out my window.) But there is so much going on at Stampede. So many microcosms. There is the media world. The rodeo. Indian Village.DSCF8467

There are artists. And their art.

DSCF8511 And there is Budweiser poured down cowboy hats.DSCF8567 I learned so much about the city I live in in these past couple of months. Infinitely more than I ever knew. The people are real and they are kind and they really really care. People moved mountains to put this show on after the flood.

I don’t know what to say except that first impressions are such a scratch on the surface. If you pay attention–if you look and dig and search–there is so much to uncover. I relearn this all the time.

Also: alpacas are snugglebugs.


(I said ‘say cheese!’ and they straightened up and posed just like this- no joke!)

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