Lucky me--it's time to pack up the camper and head west once again! This two-week adventure will be a combination of A) part Rez Ride 2010, B) part family vacation, and C) part Harley ride through Wyoming with friends.
This year, in 2010, our plan is to capture footage and scenery on the Lower Brule and Crow Creek Reservations in central South Dakota along the famous Lewis and Clark Trail. And as of today we've upped participation in the ride to four bikes!
B) For our family vacation we'll spend one week at the Horsethief Campground south of Hill City. Our youngest son David will join us, along with another family and their three kids. We'll do some of the typical family traditions, sightseeing, little bit of tourist shopping, and end each day with dinner back at the campground, followed with an evening campfire.
One author note: On Tuesday, July 27, I've been invited to speak to the Hill City Book Club at the Hill City Library. We'll be discussing Hidden Heritage...the Story of Paul LaRoche. Since many people in Hill City are fans of Paul LaRoche and Brule', it should be a fun evening! I am looking forward to our discussion.
C) On Sunday, August 1st, four other couples will join John and I for a circle tour through Wyoming. We're leaving from Hill City and taking some of the back roads west to Sheridan, then up to Cooke City, Montana. From there we head south into Yellowstone National Park and will spend one night in Grand Teton, Wyoming. Next we head east to Buffalo, and back to Hill City on the fifth and final day. We'll finish up our vacation with a couple days of riding in the always-beautiful Black Hills before returning to Minnesota.
My husband and I have been going to South Dakota at least once--and quite often twice--every summer since 2003...and each year part of the reason has involved Hidden Heritage and/or Brule'. On that note, let the adventure continue!
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Pat lives on a ranch in Sundance, Wyoming and writes poetry. Real poetry. A couple posts ago I shared my feeble attempt at poetry during the Landscape & Literature of the Horse Retreat I attended back in June at the Vee Bar Ranch west of Laramie. (Okay, yes, I feel drawn to Wyoming and use any excuse to venture westward!)
I'll be the first to admit, however, there's a difference between Pat's poetry and mine. In fact, Pat's poem "Denial" was recognized in June by Ted Kooser, US Poet Laureate 2004-2006, in the American Life in Poetry. With Pat's permission, here is her poem:
He called it "his ranch,"
yet each winter day found her beside him
feeding hay to hungry cows.
In summer heat
you would find her in the hayfield--
cutting, raking, baling, stacking.
In between she kept the books,
laundered, fed bum lambs.
Garden rows straight,
canned jars of food
lined cellar walls.
Then she died.
I asked him how he would manage.
"Just like I always have," he said.
Amazing! Through a minimal amount of words I can picture each decade of this woman's life. Anyway, Pat shared her good news with me earlier this week, and I felt it was worthy to pass on. If you by chance pick up a copy of Grassland Genealogy (Finishing Line Press, 2009) you will see that Pat's writing style is in one sense heartwarming, like "Requiem In Lace", and in another sense frank and forthright, such as "Wringer Washer", a short poem that speaks of a woman's tenacity. Pat shares a way of life in the contemporary west through fragmented sentences and rhymes that speak to the heart and draws the reader to her spirit.
Maybe as our world gets smaller (as it sure seems to!) Wyoming will get closer to Minnesota and I won't have so far to drive next time!
(*Group photo is by Alice Liles, Muleshoe, TX; Landscape & Literature of the Horse Retreat, 2010)
Sunday, July 4, 2010
The high school (senior high, junior high, and district office) had the roof ripped off and authorities later found the building had started to crumble. Plans were in place for an all-school reunion the following day, which would have meant many more people in the school. It was eerie to walk down a street a block from where I grew up that was unrecognizable. Trees my dad planted (bottom left photo) in our back yard were toppled.
So on this Fourth of July it seems all the more appropriate to give thanks to our military friends and families who dedicate their lives and sacrifice more than we'll ever know in the name of freedom. I'm thankful to live a country with God and freedom at our very core . . . and I'm thankful for the type of upbringing I had in a small town like Wadena.
Happy Fourth of July to all,