tall tree (given mountain man name)
johnny suicide (and beloved)
every year on labor day weekend there is an event held at Fort Bridger WY, called the mountain man rendezvous. it is a spectacular event that is held to celebrate an era of yesterday when the mountain man, native american, and traders alike roamed the American west. the event is an opportunity for enthusiasts and spectators (such as i) to get together and take a step back in time (pre 1840). though the dress and housings at the rendezvous may be primitive it is not shy on capitol...apparently, this event is wyoming's biggest revenue making event of the entire year (sounds like everyone has participated in it but me).
i gained a respect for the participants and was impressed with how much devotion and pride they take in our country's history and can easily see how much fun it is to get into the spirit of it all. i saw plenty of mountain men, native americans in beautiful dress, guys in nothing more than a loin cloth, southern belles, colonials, abe lincoln, a saloon gal, bowler hats, cloth parasols, tomahawks, beads, furs and leathers, flutes, drums, calico and buck skin everywhere...it was awesome.
i walked away from this event with even more of an appreciation of my own heritage. as a young kid i quickly took pride knowing i have a little slice of native american blood in me (1/8th to be exact). my mother's grandmother was full-blooded and came from the tribe Sauk and Fox (of the great lakes region). because of this event, i am left with a yearning to know more of the history of these people and my connection with them. what a great source of inspiration!
next year i will be back and be less of a spectator. i look forward to seeing you there...
some funny side stories about me as a kid and my misunderstandings of my native amercian blood...
- knowing my mom was part indian, and seeing a bunch of western cowboy decor in my house (part of the 80's cowboy craze thanks to "urban cowboy"), i asked my mom "mom, if you're an indian why are you with dad if he is a cowboy?"
- i used to get an abnormal amount of nose bleeds as a kid (the problem seemed to be resolved when i had my nose cauterized as a teenager), but just after having one of my many nose bleeds i asked my dad "dad, you know how i have indian blood in me?" "yeah..." "well, do you think i have any more Indian blood in me after all these nose bleeds?"
ohhh...what i get to look forward to with my kids.