Friday, June 12, 2009

Miles City or Bust!

It was just like the good old days around here last week. In an effort to commememorate the wagon trains of the frontier days, folks from around eastern Montana gathered in Brockway and other locales on Sunday morning, prepared to traverse the countryside in old-timey wagons and converge on Miles City for a Saturday parade recognizing the Montana Stockgrower's Association. But it just was not meant to be. It rained all weekend. (It never rains all weekend. I live in the desert and we got about 15% of our annual rainfall in one weekend.)So in an effort to make this authentic, the wagon trainers sat around he local watering hole all day Sunday and the horses stood outside in the rain, tied to horse trailers or wandering through the corrals. They (the wagon trainers, not the horses) determined that they would depart the Brockway meeting point on Monday instead, hoping to make up for lost time somewhere along the way.

But it kept raining and the wagons kept sitting. Authenticism was at a high point now. Homesteaders and cowboys trailing cattle would never have thought to get their animals or equipment muddy. They, too, would have sat around drinking Bud Light while their perfectly groomed animals rested alongside a sleek shiny horse trailer.

So on Monday afternoon, the wagon train boss decided to top off the authenticism with a call to circle the wagons. And load the horses up and drive (as in on the highway, with the wagons pulled behind) the whole wagon train complete with weed-free hay, expensive pick-ups and trailers with living quarters, and a catered dining menu, to the next planned camp-out destination. It was so real. Really.

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