The rodeo: days nineteen and twenty-one
So on the nineteenth we rode over to Fortuna from Eureka and met up with Luke and Erica, whose free hotel room we would be staying in for the weekend. In the evening we attended the first rodeo-like event of the rodeo, which featured ATVs instead of horses. Events included ATV barrel racing, and the world famous Quadiators battle, where teams of two compete to pop other ATVs' balloons with plastic bats. I ate cotton candy.
The next morning we attended the Kiwanis pancake breakfast, where we attempted to eat as many pancakes as possible. I didn't succeed, and after the parade at noon got hungry for a huge burrito lunch, immediately followed by the RODEO. Bucking bronc riding, barrel racing, steer wrestling, and team roping were all observed by these two eyes sitting in the scorching sun, first row of the bleachers. Rodeos are pretty cool to see once, but I won't be going to another one for a few years, as they are actually pretty boring.
On Sunday, we went to the big barbecue that accompanies the rodeo. Unfortunately, Sam and I were counting on multiple passes through the food line, but were denied upon trying for a second helping. The meat was sauce-less but plentiful; the sides were excellent. In the evening, having not had enough meat I suppose, we went to the Eel River Brewery right next to our hotel, and began an epic hearts championship, as well as a game of horseshoes. Sam and I figured out the rest of our trip that day: eight more days to California.