28th Annual North Florida Tour


AIN’T IT SO . . .


This North Florida Tour Tale gets taller as the story goes; is it myth or fact?   Ali “Buckaroo” Alligator swears it’s true!   Ali meets up with the legendary ole’ Ragtime Cowboy Joe, as they have a tendency to do from time to time.   Cowboy Joe was a well known veteran wrangler from round these parts of the Suwannee River, and had been eating a steady diet of crawdads, mullet, shrimp (ocean roaches), eel, alligator meat, mad toms, hushpuppies, and cornpone patties for decades.  Other than eating, one of his most beloved hobbies was to wrestle the swamp dragon, and Ali “Buckaroo” Alligator was one of those ole dogs that Joe enjoyed taking to task.


Cowboy Joe, a lover of the swamp, liked to “grapple” with his 14 foot saurian rival when the betting was right from the city slickers.  He would also swap stories and attempt to dazzle his other daredevil friends or the touting outsiders (maybe city greenhorns?).   Joe’s claim would be to wrestle Ali “Buckaroo” with brut strength and valor.  As the legend goes, both armed fighters would claim – I’ll not be outdone!   These events were said to be bloodthirsty, furious, teeth chomping, and undulating exhibitions.


During one of these “carte du jour” events, they were wrestling and tumbling like gymnasts.   The argument of this day and others were, “Who is that masked cowgirl with a whip and a frying pan; claiming she can cook?”


We heard her as she passed, deep in song -- “I’m a marvelous cook and pinto beans are my favorite dish!  When it’s sunrise on the plains, I’ll be riding high like the sun across the sky.”


Their dispute became a snorting fiery exchange of contempt.  Ali claimed that the masked cowgirl could cook, and ole’ Joe . . .   she can’t cook!  Ali bellowed to his opponent a second time, “Ain’t it so . . . I’m going to be no more nice guy; she can cook!”


Ali was howling to win this fight, and his leather was shining like gold from his sweat.  Again, he said, “death to the end!”  However, that claim of death to the end was always his grumbling and charge.  In my opinion, Ali was just a shade shagreen.  Who would he get to fight with him at another time?


The masked cowgirl riding high and hard on her pal with her 10 gallon hat, buckles, and straps, rode by their fight.  She was shouting, “Come & get it . . . your favorite dish, shrimp, crawdads, catfish, roastin’ corn, cornpones, and such!”


Cowboy Joe was shouting that he was going to send Ali to his alligator burial ground and that the masked rider and friend of Ali’s was not any kind of a cook!  The fight continued as Cowboy Joe  whirled himself out of the water.  He surprised the gator with a tackling maneuver from behind turning him over on his back.  He squeezed his jaw shut so that he could not chomp down on him winning the battle.  Normally, the gator is nobody to fool with; however, on that faithful day, the gator had to cry “Uncle”!


You have read this legend of the masked cowgirl with a whip, and now folks, this is your question.  Who is that masked cowgirl with a whip and a frying pan?


This bizarre tale just might interest you to attend the North Florida Tour in ole’ Florida.  If you provide the right answer to our search, there might be a special prize for you during Saturday nights’ shrimp feast and dance.


Also this year, a special contest planned using your straight, shooting ability with old fashion bows and arrows.  The most accurate shot will win a “turkey” for the Thanksgiving pot. 


During this upcoming North Florida Tour weekend and for all of the “newbys” participating, hope you will have the best of fun, cycling, boating, and more!


Margaret Bokros