There’s an old Arab proverb that says, “The wind of heaven is that which blows between a horse’s ears” and nowhere is that more evident to me than at Rancho Las Cascadas. Imagine cantering over the hills of central Mexico on a trusted steed with the wind blowing in your face and where the rapid hoof beats match your own pounding heartbeat as you race across the countryside. The rush of adrenaline as you make your way over beautiful Mexican farmland is a joy like no other and easily proves the old proverb true.
But during my first trip to the Rancho, racing around beautiful Mexican farmland wasn’t what I was after. At the time it had been many years since I had ridden and I was somewhat apprehensive about riding with such freedom. The picture I’ve submitted is from that first trip. Even though I wasn’t ready to go “rapido!” I wanted to spend as much time as I could on a horse and, as is the case with anything at the Rancho, the staff was more than happy to accommodate my request. We walked for miles and miles taking in some of the most beautiful scenery I’ve ever seen while listening to sounds of nature. We visited old ruins and crossed shallow streams as I was taken back to a time where nature set the pace for the days. You see, it’s not just a change in scenery that I got at the Rancho, it was a change of pace. The days slowed down so that I could take them in and the evenings lingered on as long as I wanted them to.
As we were walking through the countryside, I had my camera with me. In an effort to capture as much of the beauty of Mexico that I could, I took many pictures…but this photo is by far, my favorite. To me, it captures the beauty of riding at Rancho Las Cascadas. In this picture, you can see the trust between the horse and rider by the relaxed but attentive posture of the rider and the perky ears of the horse. But it’s also about what you don’t see. No fences, no cars, no roads and no worries. Just beautiful Mexican countryside and the freedom to take a relaxed walk as we did, or to shorten the reins and go for a canter. And in case you’re wondering why it’s not a picture from my last visit, that’s because on that trip, I was ready for a canter! My camera wouldn’t have fared very well thanks to the amount of cantering I did.
So, as I said earlier, for me this picture says it all about riding at Rancho Las Cascadas, “No fences, no cars, no roads and no worries.”
Mary Rose Kaddo, Forest Hills, NY USA
1st Place – RLC Photo Contest 2016