Thursday, February 12, 2015

Week 2: Mammoths and Crazy Horse

Hello there,

I'm just going to get straight into it without much of an intro, but for everyone who doesn't feel like reading my novel-esque blogposts ( The word "esque" is currently one of my favorites... can you tell?) here's a quick summary: We cleaned some horse stuff, did more chores, visited Rapid City a couple of times, ate great food and went sight-seeing. If you wanna know what we saw, read the post :P

Thursday

Thursday was quite a cold day, so we spent it in the basement cleaning halters and brushes. It was quite interesting to see a halter which you could've sworn was grey, turn pink. We also cleaned up the garage a little bit, got pick-up driving lessons (so much fun, but you have to be careful when going through the gate while feeding so that you don't knock the sidemirrors off. I might've tapped against the gate once already...or twice..don't judge me, I'm not a ba driver I swear). Other than that we got to meet the horses "in person", stroking them and getting to know their herd behavior. It's so interesting seeing them interact with one another, I think I could spend an entire day just watching them. You learn so much just through the way they react to each other. For dinner we had potatoe soup and some of the best biscuits I've ever had. Seeing as I don't have any particular pictures of today, look at this little chihuaha; his ears just kill me!



Friday:

Our first Friday was very quiet. We didn't have a lot to do so we raked some of the "poop piles" up for the bobcat ( a machine, not the animal) to spread out and visited Hot Springs (the nearest town) to pick up some fruit and vegetable baskets at night. I also skyped with my boyfriend for the first time. It's a very surreal feeling skyping someone you're so close to. You feel as though you're with them because you can see their face and their reaction to what you say, but you can't touch them to give them a (light) punch or anything like that. Basically, the 3D part is missing.  I'm not sure whether or not I like it...It shows one how very far away one is from another and that makes me sad. I guess this is a good time to talk about homesickness while I'm at it. Do I sound completely cold-hearted when I say I'm not homesick? I miss my family and my little Molly (my dog) and my boyfriend very much, but I mean, I'm going to be gone until June, and there is nothing that will change that, so what's the point in moaning, right? Is that horrible?

Saturday:

I skyped with my parents, brother and dog on Saturday. I had to get up at five am, but it was worth it. It was so much fun seeing them all...poor mommy, alone with two men (well, one and a half men). My dog is very much ignoring me, apparantly she sneaks into my room sometimes and causes as much mayhem as possible. She is not amused that I abandoned her like I did. I take this in the most flattering way and say that she misses me. We also drove into Rapid again to watch the youngest daughter of our host family perform in a music contest. I think I haven't mentioned this yet, but Rapid is about an hours drive away from where we live...but that's not very far, thinking in US standards, and one gets used to the car drive very quickly. One hour passes very fast. Usually.

Sunday: 

We visited the Mammoth Museum in Hot Springs on Sunday. The museum is actually an excavation site where they still do digs, so it is still active, which I find very cool. The center of the museum is an old sinkhole where the mammoths died in, thousands of years ago. They've already found over 60 skeletons and have about 40 more feet down to excavate. Very cool, I must say. It was also very windy that day. And if one says it was very windy in South Dakota...trust me, that's very windy. Chicago is nothing against the wind here. If there's no wind here you better not jinx it by saying something stupid like "yay, no wind today" (trust me, been there, done that), because the wind hears it and goes "whoops, my bad, here you go: whooooooosh". Great job wind, thanks buddy.



My Jaw compared to that one of a Mammoth. Well let's face it, my HEAD compared to the Jaw of a Mammoth

I'm even smaller than the tiniest baby Mammoth...short people problems....


Monday:

Crazy Horse Memorial. Great, great day. It was very warm, a sweater was enough to keep one nice and toasty and the sun was great. Not a cloud in the sky. I'd already been to Crazy Horse Mountain a few years ago, but they've added onto the museum and let's face it, it's always worth the trip. Seeing as it's the winter here, there's not a lot of basically no tourists, so we almost had the place to ourselves. It was very nice. We spent some of our time just sitting on the deck there looking at the mountain and chatting with the sun warming our backs. Seeing as I am generally fascinated by the Native American Culture and their way of life, and I've already had my fair share of papers and presentations on Crazy Horse, I can only recommend to everyone who visits South Dakota to go there. It's such a fascinating place to learn about Native American History and such. The thing that impresses me most is the Quote by Crazy Horse when he was once asked where his lands are now ( being faced with life on the Reservation) and he pointed to the Black Hills and said "My lands are where my dead lie buried".









Tuesday:

The most beautiful January day I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Over 19°C which is like over 60°F, not a cloud in the sky....just plain gorgeous. Coincidentally also my boyfriends birthday, which was very nice, even though I was very sad not to be there to celebrate with him. We stained the library upstairs that day, which was loads of fun. I almost had a whole bucket of mahogany stain dumped on my head (thanks Lea ;) ) because I am very short and so I had the task of painting the parts closest to the ground and Lea (the tallest) stood on the scaffolding painting the ceiling and well...she sort of forgot she had the paint bucket in her other hand. Missed me by like an inch, although my jeans caught their fair share, I now have a brown stain on my right knee which I fear I might get to keep for a while, cause it won't wash off. It was loads of fun though, so it's all good. Tuesday was also the first day I got to throw the hay off of the flatbed pick-up, which made me feel very good about myself. I'm such a big girl :P

We got Hay delivered today, so we locked the little dogs in the Pick-up; otherwise they would've gotten flattened by the HUGE (and by huge I mean, Transformers-huge) Tractor.





Wednesday:

We finished staining those parts in the library which we could reach without putting ourselves in serious danger (I could've hung off the ladder a little more...but it's only our second week, better not risk falling and breaking every bone in my body). We also waxed the hardwood floors in the parlor and hall. Wednesday was so windy we actually couldn't feed until about eight am because the wind would've blown the hay and alfalfa all over the place, so there was no point and we had to wait. I have to say, I love working outside. Even though it gets pretty chilly and windy most of the time it gives me satisfaction to do physical work, see a result at the end of the day and to know that I've done some excercise one could almost say.


Let's see, what was also worth mentioning this week:
- Eggplant parmesian....delicious, and I usually don't like eggplant, but man that was good!
- We're starting to feel more at home in our little basement room, it's definitely helped now that it's nice and warm with the space heater
- The adorable doggies that I've forgot to mention so far. There's three in total. Tessa Mae, an australian sheep dog, Mojo a dachshund/chihuahah ( I don't think I've spelled that wrong but it's almost ten pm and I wanna go to bed - shoot me) and little Koda, a chihuahah. He is so small I can pick him up with one hand and his massive overbite makes him even cuter. They are all massive cuddlers which is nice, it helps a lot with missing Molly.



I think that's it for Week 2 guys. Thanks for reading, hopefully I haven't bored you to death... if so: BOO!! WAKE UP I'm done now :D

See ya soon guys,

xoxo

Laura
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