Being an assistant guide or a guide wasn’t one of my goals when I came to the Ranch. At the Ranch we are always trying new things and learning new things. When the opportunity of being an assistant guide on a trip was proposed to me I didn’t really feel comfortable about going in the bush and taking care of all the guests and having the responsibility of doing all this work with the horses. So I asked our manager if I could do a Dude Ranch Experience instead of a real pack trip.
I became Leandra’s assistant guide for a few days for a Dude Ranch Experience. The Dude Ranch guests can do a lot of activities, but instead of going in the bush and sleeping in tents they are staying at the Ranch, so it’s a little more comfortable and a bit fancier than a pack trip. Before the guests arrived Leandra asked me to plan a schedule for their trip with us. When you are a ranch guide there is a lot of things that you have to take into consideration, and there is also a lot of paperwork so you need to be really organized.
The first day when the guests arrive is always the same, before starting to go for some rides we are doing the riding orientation to know if the horses we chose fit the guests and if the guests are confident enough with the horses.
The riding orientation is done in two parts: theoretical and practical. Leandra our lead guide took care of the presentation of the theoretical and practical orientation. After we have to find a saddle which fits to the guest and after we fit the saddle to the horse. At this time some of the staff members came to ask me some questions, it was always like that asking me was faster and easier than looking for the response by themselves. I didn’t know how to say no, so I helped them.
So later this day I just though about what I dd for myself, for my guests and for the others on this first day. And that’s not what I wanted to do during my all week, having two jobs at the same time – assistant guide and office manager. So I decided to say no, the day after and start prioritizing what I wanted to do and what was the most important for me. I needed to think more about me and less about the others. Helping others and the team spirit is something really important here because without the team we are nothing and can’t do our job correctly but sometimes we just have to say no because we can’t help everybody every time. This first day I learned two things: saying no doesn’t mean that you are a bad person, and you also need to focus on your priorities.
– Cynthia, France