I love waking to the sounds of birds, twittering in the trees! Early Monday morning they were at it here in Medora ND and I didn’t even ind being awakened at 4 a.m. I laid there nearly two hours just enjoying the sounds of nature in this tiny hamlet of population 130.
You would never have known the tiny-ness of the town when we drove on Sunday afternoon (Flag Day). The line into the National Park was about 10 cars long, both sides of the little town’s main street were fully parked up with cars, RV’s, motorcycles, and what-not. There were numerous horse trailers parked a block away from the RV park and all afternoon we could watch horsemen and horsewomen and buggy drivers roaming up and down the street in front of the RV park. We even watched on horseman walking his steed because the critter had developed a limp. Dorothy, we are not in New York!
I have such a love/hate relationship with these small towns. They are such a relief and joy after a lifetime of living in Toledo, Chicago & Milwaukee. But I find it difficult to imagine what living in one of these abbreviations of society would be like if you were doing it for your entire life!
I like to pretend that I could live in a little town; but truth be told we tried living in a town (Swanton OH) of 3000 in the early 70’s and we spent all our time driving back and forth to Toledo! I’ve slowed down a bit since then but even now as RV’ers I don’t think we have ever gone a full 14 days before the urge to go grocery shopping or some other form of shopping gripped us and forced us into the car for a day’s drive into civilization.
RV’ing gives us a chance to test out a lot of these little burgs, but I know for a fact that I’d go crazy living in one. And the same thing seems to apply to staying in one place now. Peg & I have been talking about our stay in S. Texas. It was 4 months — the same amount of time we’ll be spending in Bosque del Apache. Without a gig or some pressing activity to keep us busy 4 months was about as much time as we wanted to spend in that place. We did not have that problem in Oregon where we had a volunteer gig — heck we spent 10 months as volunteers and then hung out another month or more before leaving.
When we’re ‘just traveling’ it seems that 2 weeks are about as much time as we want / need in one place before we feel as if we’ve seen what we want to see and are ready to move on. Once we arrive in Thomson IL on July 1, the rest of our summer is broken into 14 day visits.
I didn’t pay much attention to our campsite when we were backing in. With another RV to our right, a tree to our left and another tree on the opposite side of the road I had my hands full and the workamper guided me in nicely! What I should have paid a little attention to was the fact that we were backing in on grass! Yes, with rain in the forecast for overnight I’m hoping we will not re-experience soft-ground of Los Fresnos!
Theodore Roosevelt National Park
I never particularly associated the term Rough Rider that is associated with Teddy Roosevelt and connected it with North Dakota. Teddy came to North Dakota in 1883 — and didn’t become president until 1901. He served in the Spanish-American War in 1898 and when he succeeded Colonel Leonard Wood as commander the name of the 1st Cavalry changed to Roosevelt’s Rough Riders. That was a term that was familiar in 1989 because of of Buffalo Bill who’s show was called “Buffalo Bill’s Wild West and Congress of Rough Riders.
If you’re on horseback in this country you have to be a rough rider. This is rough country and when Teddy first saw this country he went back East and brought two men back with him from Maine to form a cattle business here. He started the Maltese Cross Ranch and then a year later a second open-range ranch called Elkhorn. The Elkhorn became Teddy’s principal residence. It was a place where he could live the ’strenuous life’ that he loved. His tenure here — and witnessing the decimation of wildlife by disease and hide hunters brought to his attention the tenuous relationship between man and nature. When he became president he pursued his interest in natural history by establishing the U.S. Forest Service and by signing the 1906 Antiquities Act which organized 18 national monuments. He also got congressional approval for the establishment of 5 national parks and 51 wildlife refuges and set aside land as national forests. Needless to day, Teddy had a lot to do with the lives of those of us who live as full time RV’ers! The path he set serves us all well
I’ll devote a separate blog for the actual visit. Thanks for stopping by and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.