Two bothers who followed a guide book to Patagonia, written by their ancestor, fell in love with the place and are now planning to risk all to go back and buy a ranch to farm sheep and lure tourists out to embark on the same sort of adventures they had.
- To get away from the normalities of western life and experience the physical and mental independence of such a vast wilderness – imagine 30,000 acres of pure freedom.
- Also to offer other people that liberty which is almost impossible to find in modern life. If man’s advancement in history is seen in terms of quality of life then it has taken a downturn in recent times as our freedom is increasingly encroached upon by laws, stress and the sheer volume of people in the world.
- Also its damn good fun charging around and playing cowboys.
- And wool is good business at the moment
- And it sure beat the hell out of sitting anywhere near a desk.
It isn’t going to be easy – Jules is going out to learn what is required of a sheep farmer and search for the right sort of ranch – it has to be a happy balance between a good place to farm and a beautiful enough place for tourists to visit – the gorgeous land at the foot of the Andes is too expensive and keeps being bought by the likes of Ted Turner and Sly Stallone.
Also it will be a remote farm – no central electricity or water supply or sewage system so a lot of building will be required and the boys have no builder’s skills.
Also the locals are friendly, but Argentine bureaucracy is notoriously slow and they will need to select farm workers to look after the place – the legendary Gauchos who tend to be either very hard workers with tremendous skill, or useless drunks.
+ Sheep love to die, tourists don’t come, horses go lame, sheep get rustled allot, rivers flood, rains don’t fall, the wind blows hard, people fall ill or off horses, wool prices and governments change.
The boys could be well over their heads (no seriously).
But they have help – they know people and have one or two family friends out there and last time they were there they had many offers of help, from random people they met. Mainly from one character who is sure to feature a lot – Fabian. A real knight in shining armour – he does very little except enjoy life and go around helping people for nothing. He built his own house and repairs cars and will help to look for a farm and negotiate a price.
Then they will have to learn how to manage over 3,000 sheep. Dipping, breeding, sheering and miles and miles of … fencing. They will have to stay up late some nights patrolling for rustlers – just to let the locals know that they are vigilant.
They will be thousands of miles from home, and friends (who they hope are going to come out and visit) doing something they know very little about, just for the sheer adventure of the damn thing.
It is worth it -
But the life they are looking for is exciting. They will be hunting wild boar the local way - with knives and dogs; hunting ostriches the Indian way - with bolas; inviting locals for gaucho games such as rough polo, rodeo and spearing the ring.
And with a distinct lack of female company, will the boys manage to find more than just provisions in the local towns or do the sheep have more to worry about than pumas and rustling.