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PART 3: RECLAIMING MY DREAM

I’m setting up my next journey into being the ride of my life. An opportunity of a lifetime to ride and write, shoot and share.

My first ride was all about getting down to Guatemala. We were on a mission to get there as fast as possible -by horse. BUT, along the way, I fell in love with Mexico for so many reasons.

I still enjoy Guatemala, like I did while living here years ago. The weather is perfect!!! It’s unbelievably beautiful, every day! But I would be a lot more at ease here if I didn’t have a horse. The horse culture here is rather disappointing and if you have a good horse, everyone wants it. In Guatemala, like most poorer countries, when you have nice stuff, you guard it. Otherwise, it’s fair game….that’s just how it is. Also, the drivers in Guatemala are maniacs, and the roads and trails can be just downright dangerous, what with the random holes, and broken bits of garbage, concrete, metal and barbed wire everywhere. These have been the major reasons for not wanting to settle here, especially after experiencing the depth of Mexican horse culture as I rode through that country for 5 months last year.

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The unfortunate reality of horse culture in this country.

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Beautiful but tough living.

All this came to me over the winter as I started going over my 10 000 plus photos from the first trip, preparing the best for a book. I really enjoyed editing the photos these last few months, something I haven’t done in 15 years, since I was here before, working on making short films and presentations.

It was over the last few months editing and riding in the countryside that I realized something really deep about why starting in 2014 I had REALLY wanted to return to Guatemala. I learned about my past in Guatemala and how it related to my present and future….

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Riding around Itzapa is horse heaven

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The hills above the plains are breathtaking.

While writing and editing I realized why I wanted to come back to Guatemala so bad: to reclaim my old dream of shooting authentic stories and sharing them!! It was then that I realized this long forgotten dream of mine was meant to be remembered and reclaimed….

15 years ago, while living in Guatemala about 15km from where I write this now, I was shot, almost killed and robbed of almost all of my possessions. My $5000 top of the line laptop, my hours and hours of footage, my video camera, my bike, pretty much everything -GONE.

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Just a symbolic image of my experience 15 years ago.

It’s truly a story for another time, but how it relates to the here and now is relevant. Back then I was really, really wanting to get into filmmaking and documentary type stuff. But, after having it all stolen in such a abrupt way, I kind of just shut that dream away. At that point I didn’t say: Oh I’ll move back to Canada or somewhere safer. I said, I’ll just own less stuff here so people won’t want to rob me.

This last part is critical to the story here and now.

This mindset I adopted was weak and counterproductive to who I am and what I can bring to this world. Sacrificing my dream of filming/documenting because I was living in a very dangerous country led to years of “meh”…something I’m only just realizing these last few months. While out riding recently I felt it clearly. My dreams all those years ago were taken from me here, and instead of fighting to get them back, I let it be. But now, I feel different. After riding 5000 miles with Roxy in 375 days and persevering thru everything- I know what is mine, and I won’t let it go to waste anymore. It’s like my voice is back…

Currently I have a fantastic horse that is in great shape and well taken care of. Via Roxy I get to visit people everywhere and share experiences with the people I meet as well as with people online.

This is a very satisfying lifestyle for me. I’m not going to stop this just to continue to live in this country. I’m going to continue with this shooting and sharing lifestyle, but as I’m with a horse, I’m going to do it in the place where they honor the horse in their culture, and where the horse is in their blood -MEXICO.

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San Luis Potosi, Mexico

to be continued in
PART 4: MAKING THE DREAM REAL.

 

5000 Miles of Hope

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