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Her First Rodeo

Her First Rodeo

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Her First Rodeo

Bewertungen:
4/5 (6 Bewertungen)
Länge:
68 Seiten
1 Stunde
Freigegeben:
Jul 14, 2020
ISBN:
9781094412054
Format:
Buch

Beschreibung

Making its way across the biggest arenas in the Southwest, the Diversity Rodeo spotlights the unique talents of cowboys and skilled horse riders of Native American, Latinx, and African American heritage. For some cowboys and cowgirls, it’s a chance to showcase talents they’ve practiced for a lifetime, like bucking-bronco riding and barrel racing. For others, it’s a rare chance to step outside the expectations of traditional culture and discover who they really are.

Carmen Ramirez starts the rodeo as a traditional Mexican horse dancer, her dream of racing horses competitively made impossible thanks to her strict parents and their rules. But as she continues to get to know the other riders on the circuit and learns more about herself, her desire to set her own path grows stronger. Encouraged by new friends and the potential to become a champion, Carmen thinks she might be ready to take on her own road to rodeo stardom.

Freigegeben:
Jul 14, 2020
ISBN:
9781094412054
Format:
Buch

Über den Autor

Kelly Papyrus is a writer whose stories feature diverse characters and people of color. She loves learning about new cultures and writing about them. She lives in Florida and loves dogs.

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Her First Rodeo - Kelly Papyrus

bryantstreetshorts@scribd.com.

Part One: Racing Toward Destiny

The horse slid sideways, his weight tilting to the right, threatening to tip and throw me to the ground. I held my breath and waited for the very last second, until I could sense rather than see that he was on the verge of going too far. Then I jerked the reins as hard as I could manage. Stormy gave a whinny of protest but immediately pulled out of the circle formation and up to his place in the line, perfectly lined up with Sunset. I finally let myself exhale and flash a grin at Papi, staring sternly back at us. Without glancing over at Sunset, I knew instinctively that my sister, Carolina, had the same big smile on her face. The long days of practicing under the desert sun, sweating and squinting, had finally paid off. Even Papi couldn’t find anything wrong with us this time.

The dust swirled around our horses’ legs as we waited for his verdict. In the two weeks since Papi had found out the Diversity Rodeo was coming to Texas, he hadn’t been happy with anything we had done. No matter how big the blisters on my thighs got or how hungry Carolina claimed to be, Papi never seemed satisfied with our efforts. My posture was too sloppy, Carolina was always half a beat behind, and neither of us could dream of being like our abuela.

This is your heritage, all of our heritage, he’d repeat every night at dinner, pausing to stare each one of us in the eye. Your grandmother was one of the greatest riders anyone in South Texas ever saw, she could make a horse dance like it was a ballerina. But they never called her to the rodeo. Wouldn’t even let her near the gate. No one wanted to see our kind then.

Now he nodded as he surveyed us slowly. I forced myself to take deep, even breaths and sit up tall even though the sun was beaming and the air so humid I could feel it weighing on me. Papi made us leave our phones in the stables during practice, but I had been a country girl long enough to know what time it was from looking at the angle of the sun across the open acres in front of us. It had to be at least three p.m., possibly four. By the time we went in, brushed down the horses, and did our regular chores, it would be at least seven when I sat down to do homework. There was no chance I was making it to the movies with my friends tonight, especially with Papi insisting on a pre-show bedtime of ten p.m.

Good, go clean up, he muttered. I heard Carolina gasp and I tried to hold back my giggle. Papi rarely said we had done well, especially when it came to Grandma’s passion. I nudged Stormy back toward the stables before he could change his mind. As soon as we got a few yards away, I gave him another nudge and pulled on the reins so we could really get moving. Stormy stretched his legs out and started cantering, flying across the distance toward home. I could hear Papi hollering for me to slow down, but I just laughed as the air flew past my face, whipping my ponytail in every direction. I loved the control I had when Stormy started to run, the feeling of letting an animal do what it wanted instead of forcing it to be perfect and dainty. I might have Abuela’s gift for horse dancing, but I also had Grandpa’s gifts for being a ranchero. I could race and rope and wrestle as well as any young man in the area, but neither of my parents wanted to hear it. For now, I had to settle for racing between the points they set out for me instead of out into the bigger world.

I slowed Stormy down a little just outside the stables to wait for Carolina. She finally trotted up and stuck her tongue out at me.

Don’t go so fast, show-off, she said.

Don’t be so scared, little baby, I tossed back.

Stop calling me that! I’m almost eighteen, she said with a scowl. It was true; even though I had turned twenty-one a few months back and Carolina would be eighteen before the year was up, everyone still talked to us like we were little girls.

Fine, you’re a grown woman, I said as we got to the stable entrance and hopped off our horses. Does that mean you can handle brushing Stormy for me?

Carmen! It takes me forever to brush them both, you know that.

I know and I’m sorry, Caro, but I still have to help Mami get tamales ready and write a paper for my Psychology 1 class. Please? I’ll do it next time. I stuck out my lip in an exaggerated pout and held Stormy’s reins out to her.

Fine, but you owe me an order of fried Oreos at the rodeo, she said as she walked into the barn.

My heart was pounding as we drove up to the fairground gate. In the rearview mirror I could see Papi pulling the horses in the pickup truck, Mami’s small face barely visible above the

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