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especially interested in that noted old trail ; and would like to make the trip from start to finish. For the old cowboys to make the trip to California would be one of the grandest things of this century, it would be history.
While I am not a man, I love to work with cattle ; and have spent a good deal of my time on the range in Southern Arizona. There is something about the way startled cattle raise their heads and look toward a horseback rider, that I enjoy. For me there is real pleasure in noting their earmarks at a glance ; and studying out their brands. Ranch life is not so exciting as it was in the early days. For one thing, when pay day comes the boys do not shoot up the town, as of old. Though the rustler is still with us, we handle him strictly within the law, but we do not love him any better than they used to thirty years ago.
I believe I could walk along the streets of any town or city and pick out the real cowboy, not by his clothes especially, but because one can nearly always notice that he has a very open countenance and almost innocent eyes and mouth. He is not innocent of course; but living in the open, next to nature, the cleaner life is stamped on his face, His vices leave no scars, or few, because old mother nature has him with her most of the time.
The cowboys in this part even, are rapidly passing out, for the wire fences and short horns are coming in. While in Texas last summer I noticed that very few kept up the old custom of good saddles, ropes, etc. Here, a good saddle, rope, boots, chaps and a good "cutting" horse are still the pride of any cowboy, for they are still very much needed.
In Old Mexico and along the line in Arizona, cow punching goes on in earnest. We still have the big round-up; the chuck wagons, the "remuda." Camped out for nights, the boys still tell old-time yarns and sing good old songs and play pranks on the tenderfoot they find in their midst.