Sunday, May 16, 2010

Bet you didn't know you could ride a bird







This last Saturday our group went on a hunt to see if a rumor was true. Rumor was that there was an ostrich farm that you not only got to look, touch, or feed the big beasts but ride them. We arrived at the farm and were blown away when we were greeted by a bird standing a few feet above my head with a small thai man clinging to his back side. We paid 70 baht ( equivalent to about 2.50$). Our nerves were a bit rattled when we actually watched the full production. Bagging the bird was risking business. The ostrich ranchers would hook the bird around the neck and try to put a small green bag over its head which would supposedly calm it down. Occasionally the rancher would fail and would either wrestle it to the ground or recieve a nice kick to the gizzard from the bird. We were given nothing but a stool and a helmet. No reins, no saddle, just me and my bird riding off into the sunset. Well it was more like a gated ring in 100 degree weather. It was thee weirdest thing i have ever done! I stepped on a stool and literally had to jump onto the big beasted bird. Then i was given my reigns aka the birds wings. I had to scoot my haunches back so i was nearly sliding off the back and then was instructed to hold onto the wings as tight as possible and wrap my legs around the birds meaty sweaty thighs...gross. Now i know what you may be thinking i would be gently guided around the ring with a trainer that would have full control of this "thing" but no, I am in Asia, safety and controll are considered out of character here. So instead they gave it a nice whomp on the caboose and sent him off running, yes RUNNING! haha it was bizarre. The bird had a smooth gate and would stop by the other volunteers with me on its back to pose for some snapshots. I must say this one more time... this was thee wierdest thing i have ever done! kinda awesome, kinda hot, and my legs definitely got tired from squeezing them to keep me from sliding off. To top the whole thing off we were sat down for lunch and at least 3/4 of the meals listed on the menu were filled with ostrich meat. It felt a little sadistic/ almost cannabalistic to be eating something i just rode, and would be watching frolic in the fields while i ate my meal. I setteled for iced chocolate milk, toast, and a fried egg.... but of course i'm in Thailand and so I did it okay! I ate some ostrich meat...and well i ate some ostrich liver too. The end


Sunday I went out with the boys to do some real labor. We went logging for bamboo. I kinda loved it. Huge bamboo trees at least 30 feet high falling left and right around me. Trying to keep my balance on a hilll that felt completely verticle while trying to hack away the nubs and branches with my machete. After cleaning the the bamboo all up we would take turn tossing the 20 trees down the hill side. From there we limbered up and threw a tree over each shoulder and hiked it out. You can just call me Paul Bunyan from here on out.

7 comments:

Tessa said...

shut your mouth right now. WHY WHY WHY am I not there with you? this is amazing. you are amazing.

Madison Beyers said...

ry red.... i cant believe you rode an aviary creature... we need to talk... before you are ever allowed to snuggle with me again we must get you cleansed. haha

natalie said...

my sister rode an ostrich once! totally random. So fun. Ry, I'm loving that you are having such a great time. Stay there. america is overrated.

Nancy said...

RY! I love love that you have set this blog up! I wish so bad you had a pic of you on the beast -- and yes, I say beast not bird. We went to an Ostrich farm in Israel and I thought they were terrifying -- more like velociraptors than large birds. I do not think I would have dared get on one for one tiny second.

Perla said...

so why am i just finding out about the blog now? and also why are there no pics of you actually riding the ostrich? i am so happy for you and all your crazy adventures. and i'm happy for this blog that you will bind into a book and read to your little kids one day!

Londy Loo said...

Um I'm jealous. I want to ride a bird.

Lady San Pedro said...

Super cute! I love baby ostriches!