We loved watching ‘The Two Amigos: A Gaucho Adventure’ on BBC recently, which followed comedians John Thomson and Simon Day on a true gaucho adventure.
After a few essential riding lessons in the UK, John and Simon donned the ‘poncho of freedom’ and set off for Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires. Their adventures involved a road trip to a local gaucho festival near the town of Pilar, which involved a hair-raising, pothole-dodging drive with Simon at the wheel (he only passed his test in his forties), to a week of intense training at La Pelada Estancia near the small town of Esquina. The ranch, on the banks of the Corrientes River, employs a dozen gauchos who train over a hundred native creole horses and manage five thousand cattle. The head honcho, the dashing Dario Gallardo, soon had Argentina’s newest gauchos bedecked in traditional ponchos, riding comfortably on two of the estancia’s sturdiest horses.
Unfortunately John did hit the deck a few times, but fortunately his Champion Ventair helped to keep him safe and fit to face the rest of the journey, which included some real gaucho work – a three-day-and-night cattle drive in the wilds of Patagonia – quite a challenge for two middle-aged comic actors with soft hands!