This was scheduled to post on Friday, May 2nd. Sorry for the mix up.
I am at Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky watching the best of the thoroughbred mares run in the Kentucky Oaks, and tomorrow I will be back to watch the elite of the elite run in the Kentucky Derby.
I can’t imagine anyone who doesn’t appreciate watching the prowess and athleticism of a great horse run a mile and a quarter in two minutes. I get chills thinking about it.
The entire event is a day of celebration. Yes, I’ll get decked out in my finest Kentucky Derby garb including a hideous hat. When everyone else is parading around in some very creative Derby headwear covered with flowers and feathers and almost anything else you could think of, I’d be more noticeable without it. And, yes, I’ll drink a mint julep, although I prefer an Oaks Lily which is the traditional drink of the Kentucky Oaks. I suppose both do the job, which is to loosen up the purse strings and encourage crazy betting. I’m all in for that too.
This is a place to observe and meet characters who I’ll want to write about. There are always the hot, handsome guys and beautiful women who command attention, but I can see them anywhere. It’s the eccentric Aunt Matilda who’s had one too many mint juleps, but will fill my ear with colorful stories of days gone by, who I want to meet, or dear Dirty Uncle Harry who knows everything there is to know about betting because he spends his afternoons at the race track and has a multitude of stories about the backside intrigue. These are the people who add color to a manuscript.
The stories are there for the picking and the story teller will gladly share with you if you want to stop and listen. There is no stranger on Derby day, and if you’re smart, there is no story left untold.