good to be home

once i heard to see where you are at, you need to move away from it and take a look at it from another place. well i did that. i took a trip that carried me for bout 3700 miles. its nice to get away but its just as nice to get home.

traveling reminds me of the days i roamed around in my youth. i had all the time in the world but had no where to go. i just went. being home lets me know i have a place in this world. i have called my mishos’ allotment my home for 37 years. the trees i planted are bout 50 feet high now. that tells me i have deep roots now as opposed to my misguided youth.

we did alot on this trip. we covered 7 states. i went to new places and seen familiar places. we drove thru mountains, along rivers and across great plains. there was beautiful scenery everywhere. we traveled the interstate and the two laned highways. we used the gps and our old fashion road atlas. you have to get off the main highways to see the real country.

we met people that we knew at different places. we went to marys’ 50th high school reunion. we camped out in her friends yard. we only drove a little over a hundred miles that day. that was the least amount of driving we did on this trip. we toured her school and went to her reunion dinner.

i had already met some of her school mates before.  and i met new people. we all knew of some of the same people.  they all went to boarding school. i did too. i was familiar with some of the experiences they spoke of. some i hadnt heard about. everyones’ experiences may be similiar but are different.

the next day we drove to see my nieces in winnebago. they are pictured. i havent seen them much since they moved there. they cooked breakfast for us. we visited with them for 3 hours. we knew we only had a 4 hour drive to get home. we shared many laughs together. we gave them some of the giveaways we bought from indian vendors.

before leaving winnebago we toured the boarding school i went to. it has changed and so have i.  it looks different but i still remember where the buildings that are gone were located. it also reminded me of incidents that took place at that school. as i drove away i left some of that behind.

on this trip we went to hot springs twice. we gambled a few times. we crossed bout 6 reservations. coupla times we drove out of our way and seen areas we hadnt planned on seeing. every day had something new to experience.

i took a few pictures. i didnt take any while i was driving but will remember what the mountains of rock and winding rivers looked like. i will down load all my pictures into a folder for this trip. i will look back at it at times to remember this trip.

today i slept in. i was tired from the trip. i feel refreshed.

further on down the road

i took my tent and air mattress for a 3-thousand-mile ride. last night i finally got to camp out. we camped out in the yard of marys’ friend. it is near the missouri river. it is better than most campgrounds we have been in. we seen a turkey and its young walking around. we also had this deer walk right up to us. we saw a beaver cross near by on the road.

we sat around a campfire visiting. that is when the deer walked up to us. camp fires werent allowed thru out most of the country we passed thru. thats why i didnt want to camp out. camping isnt the same without a fire to sit around. we got to use our lawn chairs that went for the ride too.

we had to have smores. marys friend showed us a different way to make them. they used keeblers fudge covered cookies to hold the marshmallows. that eliminates the need for hersey bars and graham crackers. they were good.

today we are going to marys high school reunion. it will be her classes’ 50th anniversary. i missed my 50th cuz of covid. dinner will be held at the local casino. we will go tour the school grounds where she went before the dinner.

tomorrow we are heading home. it is only about 5 or 6 hours away. we will probably make that longer. i want to stop to see my nieces on the winnebago rez. they will have breakfast for us. we have passed thru many rezzes on this trip. we drove for hours on the navajo rez. we drove thru the pine ridge and rosebud rezzes yesterday. we were jamming out to some indian music being played on their radio stations.

we bought souvenirs from the native stands on the navajo and pine ridge rez. we use them for giveaways. i bought some gifts at wounded knee. an old lady said unemployment was 90% there. we were glad we bought from natives. we know our money went to a good place.

on the way here we stopped in colorado. they had a hot springs. we went to the yampah vapor cave. it is little caves carved into the solid rock. heat comes from the vapors of the hot springs. the temperature in the caves is near 114 degrees. it draws out all the toxins. it felt like a good sweat lodge. because we were natives there was no charge for us. we were there about an hour before we hit the road.

we drove along the colorado river for most of this trip. we crossed it through out colorado and utah on the way to las vegas. there we seen lake mead where it is dammed. it has lost alot of water because of drought. we seen the water line was the water level was. it has dropped many feet. i did stop along the way to put my tobacco in the water.

it has been a good trip. kinda regret it is coming to an end. it was worth going on though. until next trip.

more road time

we had a good night in flagstaff with our daughter wabenokwe. we went to the lowell observatory. we listened to a lecture by a science guy about the universe. it was pretty imformative. it reminded me of sitting in astronomy class back in my college days.

after the lecture we got to look thru the telescopes they had. we seen a galaxy and a coupla binary stars. later we listened to a presentation about the constellations. the guide pointed them out with a laser light.  it too reminded me of astronomy class. it was interesting though.

we headed north the next day. before hitting the road we ate at a diner on the old route 66 highway. it was still in operation even though the road isnt used as much as the old days. breakfast was good. after getting our fill we hit the road.

we drove thru the navajo rez. we stopped at one of the many road side stands that lined the highway. local craftsmen were selling their jewelry, beadwork, pottery, rugs etc. we bought alot of things for giveaways. the lady and her mother musta smiled as we drove off. i bought a hatband, a friendship bracelet, coupla necklaces and several pairs of earrings. mary bought more than i did.

after leaving the stand we missed our turn. i had turned off the gps cuz it was getting rather annoying. i shouldnt have done that. i didnt realize it really was trying to tell us we were off the route. we drove on for miles and didnt see any road signs.

it ended up we drove miles out of our way.  we stopped at a roadside stand and asked for directions. we had a good drive seeing all the scenery we dont see at home. we are on vacation, the drive is the thing. it dont matter where we go. we just wanna see other parts of the country besides the rez.

after we got back on course. we went thru monument valley. we stopped and took pictures. we drove on to see petroglyphs up the road. we stopped at a place called newspaper rock. it was a big panel of petroglyphs on the side of a cliff. it was neat to see that.

i have seen petroglyphs or rock art at many places. i seen them in alaska, hawaii, chaco canyon, canyon de chelly, anasazi ridge in utah and in petroglyph park near albuquerque. now i add newspaper rock to that list. i will continue to see other places that have them.

today we are headed toward south dakota. mary wants to go to her high school reunion. i dont know which route we will take to get there. we will drive thru colorado and then north and east. we will get there in a round about way. i have enjoyed the views of all the places we have driven through.

every place has its own beauty. i love the rez though. like dorothy says there is no place like home. we still have a few more days of road time before we hit home. we are having a good trip so far.

toto i got a feeling we’re not in kansas anymore

once my brother gary asked me why i only took pictures of us when i traveled. i said why would i take pictures of people i dont know. he laughed and said yeah i guess.

here are a coupla pictures of me on our trip. the one is me after collecting on the bet i made that KU would win the national championship. i made it to las vegas this morning to get my money. hell yeah. that $570 will pay for part of this trip.

the other picture is me soaking in a private jacuzzi at indian hot springs. at the end of our first day on the road we went to soak.  when i first got into the water it was almost too hot for me. i havent soaked in awhile. the jets that pumped up the hot mineral water felt good. i plan to soak again on this trip somewhere.

after we soaked we went to the old mining towns in the hills. the towns are just gambling towns now. i played some and didnt win. i only lost $20. before heading to our room we had the buffalo wings we like in that town.

on our second day i noticed the low tire light on the dashboard was lit. i went to a store to ask if there was a place open to fix my tire. there wasnt but i was directed to a station that had an air pump. i aired the tire up and hit the road. i checked the  pressure again down the road. it was still leaking air. i drove on and found a tire place. they said they would take care of it.

we waited an hour before the guy told us the tire was no good.  it so happened that they had the exact same tire. i told them to put it on. they did for over $60 more than what we paid for the ones on the car. down the road i checked and seen it wasnt the exact same tire. rip offs. but at least we are good for the remainder of our trip.

we got on the road and made it to a place that had petrogylphs. we had to walk over a mile to get there. no one else was around. by the time we got there the sun was dropping. we only got to see a few of the petroglyphs. that tire caused us over an hour and a half to get on the road. so we didnt get to see more of the rock art.

we got a room an hour from las vegas. we made it in today. i was able to cash in my ticket. i havent gambled much the past few years. so i played a hundred bucks of my winnings. it was money i didnt have so i was willing to try to win more. i didnt. but i look at it as my entertainment.

today we met our daughter wabeno. we are staying at air b n b in flagstaff. when we leave here we will head toward monument valley then north toward more petroglyphs.


gonna cop some road time

we have faithfully stayed home during covid times. now it is time to see what is down the road.  our destination isnt the goal. the trip is the thing. our intent is to find an adventure along the way. we are game to do whatever appears before us.

we will camp out along the way. we packed our tent, air mattress (aint gonna rough it that much), lawn chairs and cooking gear. we will cook breakfast and coffee on the camp fire when we camp out. we will have a campfire at night to sit around.

i thawed out some deer meat we had in the freezer. i marinated it overnight. today i will put it in the dehydrator to make jerky out of it. it will be good trail food to munch on. we are also taking a 3 gallon jug of drinking water. we will drink that instead of sweet drinks like pop. and we wont have plastic bottles as litter.

we kinda got an idea about what we wanna do along the way.  we will soak in hot springs for sure. maybe at indian springs or glenwood springs in colorado. or both. i havent soaked in a few years. i know that will feel good.

after that we will head toward utah to see some petroglyphs. there are many places to them in utah. this will be a side excursion to give us something to look forward to after a long drive. visiting ancient ruins has become a hobby of ours.

our furthest point will be vegas. i wanna cash in my winning ticket. i bet on the jayhawks to win the national championship. they won it so i won some righteous coin. i have a year to collect on it. i will do that on this trip. i dont know if i will try some slots in vegas or not. it is kinda expected though. mary told my niece we were going there to get remarried. my niece believed her.

we will meet my daughter wabenokwe near the Grand Canyon on fathers day. she is only a few hours away from there. we said we could meet at a place she wants to check out. we are gonna sleep in a yurt. it is designed to give us a view of the stars at night.

once we leave vegas we will start heading back with a long side trip. mary wants to go to her high school reunion in south dakota. we dont know what route we will take to get there. it dont matter. we will find an interesting way to get there. once we see that we will head back toward the rez.

i am taking my nikon camera and the small hand held sony camera i had to buy in belize. i will also have my cell phone to take pictures with. no doubt i will take hundreds of pictures along the way. i am taking my laptop computer to write my blog as we travel.

once the sun comes up in the morning we are heading out. i can feel it will be a good trip already.

pow wows over sweetheart

a picture of me and my grand daughter kinikwe. i posed with her by my stand at the pow wow. i was wearing the new t shirt i had made for me. she told us she was a fancy shawl dancer. i watched her dance a few times. i also watched my grand daughter miamikwe who has fun dancing.

our pow wow may be over but i am still reliving parts of it. i got to visit with many people i know and some i just met. i was also texting people while working at my stand. we were sending pictures and jokes back and forth. i dont do social media so i text people i know.

i took down my stand on sunday morning. i didnt set up that day. everyone had checked out all the stands and bought what they really wanted by then. i had already advertised my craft and passed out business cards to those interested.  i sat in the arbor and watched them dance. i took lotsa pictures too.

we didnt have as many drum groups or dancers this year. maybe cuz it was called a ‘traditional’ pow wow. that means we didnt have contests, thus no big prize money. most will say pow wow is not about the money but with some it is. i kinda prefer a smaller pow wow. if we gonna spend our money it should be on us.

they pow wowed late every night but i went home bout 11 both nights.  this ol’ misho gotta get his sleep. i heard many that stayed said they had fun. having fun is what pow wows should be all about. thats why i go to them.

i took my laptop to a computer place. they updated it and added virus protection to it. i want it ready when i take a road trip. i will continue to do my blog and surf the net while on the road.

i am planning to go some where, anywhere. it dont matter, just cop some road time. i havent been anywhere since before covid. i want to camp out. i love having cowboy coffee and breakfast cooked over a fire. i like sitting around a campfire at night too.

i wanna go see petroglyphs, maybe in utah. i have seen petroglyphs in hawaii, alaska, chaco canyon, canyon de chelly and in petroglyph park near albuquerqe. i have seen lotsa rock art too. my interest in both grew from visiting ancient ruin sites.

i will also go soak in hot springs somewhere, maybe in colorado. i havent soaked in a few years. i know it will make me feel younger cuz my mother said it did for her. i have occasional back pain from my arthritis. a good soak would be good for that.

we watched the nba championship series last night. the warriors won. i am pulling for them because andrew wiggins is on that team. he only played for KU one year but we will always claim him as a jayhawk.

gotta catch up with my chores. my lawn needs mowing again.

my stand at pbp pow wow

i am having fun working at my stand during our pow wow. it was definitely worth having a stand. many people stopped by to check out my roaches. they were curious about what they were, how they were made or what they cost.  i answered every question.

i havent sold any but i got to advertise my craft. i handed out many of my business cards. i opened up the possibility for several trades. a coupla indian artists may be interested in doing a trade for a roach.

one lady has a pound of porcupine hair. she is willing to trade that and make me a pair of moccasins for a roach her son really liked. another guy makes outfits and may trade one for a good roach. when i suggested that he took my card and shook my hand. he said he would call me.

i have traded for indian tanned hides, bustles, fans and artwork for roaches in the past. i had one of the tanned hides made into a new pair of moccasins. sometimes indian artists cant afford others’ art but they are willing to trade their art for what others make.

we have had many visitors stop at our stand and visit. i shared many laughs with people i knew and even some with people i just met. we brought extra chairs for company to sit in. we are close to the arena so we could hear the singing and watch the dancing.

i seen many nieces and nephews. but then there are many that call me shishe or misho. i like that. i am uncle or grandpa to many. they treat me good and i treat them good. that is the way we are supposed to be.

last nights grand entry was put back an hour and a half. the weather people were predicting winds of 40 to 50 miles an hour. i was lucky some home boys walked by. i asked them to help me take my canopy down. i just bought that canopy to use as my pow wow stand. i didnt want the winds to take it away.

we went to town to eat at a migo joint for supper since we had a big supper break. i wanted a full meal. we headed back to the pow wow grounds later. we missed the winds, hail and rain. the pow wow was able to continue on. i didnt set my roaches out for last nights performances. i will set up again today.

the weatherman says it will hit close to 100 degrees today. that isnt counting the heat index. i imagine it will be humid. no matter. life goes on. i used to help build bridges or houses in the heat. sitting in the shade will be a breeze.

i will enjoy the last day of our pow wow. i checked out the other stands. i bought a few things for giveaways. i also had a t shirt airbrushed by a tribal member. i have bought a t shirt from him at almost every one of our pow wows.

pow wow aint over but i already miss it.

time to pow wow eh

our pow wow starts this evening. i will head over to prairie people’s park later to set up my stand. i was assigned a space near the same spot i had before at our pow wow and when we had the potawatomi gathering here. that is a good location that will get lotsa traffic.

i am looking forward to our pow wow. i will hang out at my stand and watch the indians watch the indians. pow wow time is the chance for some to be seen.  not me, i am more into watching the street theater. i would rather have people see my roaches.

i am used to hearing sad stories when people check out my roaches. i am asked ‘what about indian price’. i tell them that is the indian price. i dont charge as much for my roaches as others. people still want my art cheaper.  if they cant afford a good roach they shouldnt pow wow. they will learn it takes money to pow wow. and ones outfit factors into whether they win too.

my per cap hit my bank account. its better to check out the other stands when i have some coin in my pocket. i will see if there is anything that i gotta have. i never know what i am looking for until i spot it. now i can buy things for giveaways from stands too.

i will be at the people’s park most of the weekend. that means i will have to get my meals from the food stands. i heard they only had a coupla food stands this time.  at some pow wows people have stood in line for over an hour to get a small, over priced indian taco.  i like indian tacos but i dont “have to have an indian taco” like some people say.

i used to camp at our pow wow. that got to be too much of a hassle. some would tell us their kids wanted to camp and dump them off.  they thought we were responsible to babysit them all night. we would cook our meals over a fire and were expected to feed anyone that others invited. once some one invited a guy to camp and he ended up in our tent because there was no where else. now i just stay home.

i charged the battery to my nikon so i can take pictures to add to my collection. i have a folder of pictures i took of pow wows.  i have a folder that is just portraits of people i knew or met. it has over a thousand pictures in it. i have folders of places i traveled to. i have more of different events i attended. it all adds up to thousands of pictures. i will get more pictures at the pow wow.

i will have to do my chores before i head over to the pow wow. my animals gotta be fed every day. i cant neglect them. i will have to get eggs when i get home late at night.

this indian ready to pow wow.

getting closer to pow wow time

temps are warming up but its not as hot as it will get later this summer. i was cruising around the rez and seen this buffalo and her calf. they were wading in the small pond near the road. i just happened to have my nikon in the car.  the calves are easy to spot because they are lighter in color. it is good to see new born calves added to the herd.

i was checking out the roach headdresses i made.  i have 8 done but will only take 7 of them. one only has a single row of porcupine hair in front. i will add a second row of hair to it later. i decided not make any more with just one row of hair in front.

all these years i made them the way i was taught. i did that out of respect to the man that taught me. now i am aware that many dancers prefer at least two rows of front hair. and longer roaches have become a thing too. i will change with the times.

these roaches have been wrapped for some time. they hold their shape pretty good. i rewrapped them after misting them with a spray bottle. i had four others done but no longer have them. i donated one and the others went to relatives of mine.

i know that having only 7 roaches done aint very many. i got occupied with other things. i will set up a stand anyway. i look at our pow wow as a way to advertise my craft. pictures dont do them justice. it is better to hold them in ones hands to see how they look and feel. i will have my business cards to pass out to those that are interested.

i am looking forward to our pow wow. i like to visit with people i havent seen in some time. i never know who i will come across. its nice to catch up with what others have been doing. i like hearing the singers and seeing the dancers too.

i got hungry for catfish. we went to a place just off the rez that cooks catfish meals. i usually order the whole catfish with a baked potato and salad bar. the last time i ate there someone covered my meal. not this time. that was alright. i enjoyed my meal.

i was gonna plant some corn for making hominy. i have some in between paper towels that i kept damp. it hasnt germinated yet. it should have by now. i will keep an eye on it. if it dont germinate, it would be pointless to plant it. might have to try growing hominy another time.

the hominy seed corn i have is yellow corn. nothing wrong with that but i prefer white hominy. i like using white hominy to make mish mot (menudo). i will fix the yellow corn if it does come up though.

gotta get busy. never know what the day will bring.

nearing pow wow time

it has been raining alot this late spring. some might find that inconvenient but much of kansas is in a drought. we need the water. the cricks always had water in them when i was growing up. over the past decade they havent flowed except after a snow melt or a big rain. then they quit running.

i talked with others that grow indian corn. a few had their corn come up. others said theirs didnt. i am not the only one that wont get corn this year. it is a good thing i saved dried corn from other years. i have some to eat.

i have been thinking of planting some hominy corn. it would survive into september and be harvested late. it wouldnt matter if the kernels got hard. it would become hominy anyway. i wouldnt plant hominy corn before because i didnt want it to cross pollinate with my indian corn. now i can grow some.

i lost a few tomato plants. i do have 14 plants left. i can get enough to can from them. i will use a drip irrigation system from my rain barrels. last year the rain barrels gave me enough rainwater for a good crop of tomatoes.  i bought more barrels to hold rain water because i know it works.

i mowed my yard before this last rain. i had to pick up things that i had to mow around. i had some wood and tree limbs lying around. i got them moved. i moved lawn furniture we have in the shade of two big trees. we like to sit there sometimes. that area is usable now. i have a few more months of mowing to do.

we are having the prairie band pow wow this coming weekend. my sister and i are having a stand. i dont have many roaches on hand. i consider our pow wow an opportunity to advertise my art. some one might appreciate the quality of my roaches when they see them. i will have my business cards on hand.

i dont mind tending to a stand while the pow wow is going on. i like pow wows but i aint hard core bout it. i wont sit in my chair from friday night till late sunday. thats a bit much. sometimes i am more interested in the street theater going on.

we will set up our chairs and extra tent shade near our stand. we will have guests stop in and visit. maybe we will take a coffee pot along for company. indians like to drink coffee. i will bring a water jug to keep my liquid intake up. we probably have to eat pow wow food over the weekend. my arteries hardened up just thinking bout that much grease.

i will charge the batteries to my nikon camera. i will take pictures at the pow wow to use on my blog. i will add to the thousands of photos in my collection. i have many pictures of people over the years.

now i am waiting for the nba playoffs tonight.