Q&A: In the Wilds of Patagonia, Cowboy Honors the Pioneers Who Came Before
For Sebastián García Iglesias, the ghosts of his ancestors are stitched to the tapestry of the land they pioneered.
Sebastián García Iglesias, 25, is the great-nephew of a legendary Patagonian cowboy, or bagualero, Arturo Iglesias Alvarez. Arturo died in 1991, at the age of 71, when Sebastián was just two years old, but two decades later, his great-uncle looms large in Sebastián's imagination and in his philosophy of life.
Sebastián, his parents, his brother, and his sister live on Estancia Mercedes, the ranch settled by Arturo's parents in Patagonia in 1916.
When I arrived one wind-blown midsummer morning, I found the estancia very much as it had been in Arturo's time. A place of unworldly charm and beauty tucked between a bay and forested hills, it was where Arturo's family, and then Arturo himself, ran sheep and cattle operations.