This was first posted October 7, 2010.
Even though the day was gorgeous, and should have been spent constructively… as in finishing the last bit of tiling, or mowing a lawn, or working in my studio… I chose instead to go to Ten Sleep and roam the streets.
All kidding aside, yes, Ten Sleep has street(s) and they are paved, though not all have sidewalks yet – hey, they’re working on it! But I occasionally feel the need… the need for… socializing.
It’s easy. First go to the bank. The ladies there will ask about Victoria and teaching and cows and haying and “When are you moving to the Mills Place?” That takes 20 minutes.
Go to the Pony Express… our little MiniMart/SevenEleven. Trade sarcasm with the two old guys that sit by the window and keep an eye on Ten Sleep’s business. Chatter with L., who always asks about my boys and my dogs… she moved here after Victoria left… She makes me laugh. A cherry Pepsi and I’m on my way.
Next is the Post Office. Give a smile and pay with one dollar bills since K. was out of ones. That helps her along and might just get her through the afternoon. Drop my sympathy card in the slot, and wipe a tear away for M.
Run into S. on the street. She wants to borrow my dog crates… she’s getting a puppy next week… a South African Mastiff! No problem, I’ll bring them in!
The library. My old haunt. Worked there for nine years. Definitely good times. A long visit with my old boss/friend. I bought some raffle tickets for the Harvest Dinner fundraiser. As I start to leave, here comes P. OOOOOH! I haven’t seen her in *ages*.
P. was definitely one of my first friends I had after I married Vernon. Half mom/half friend… she eased my way into the ranching lifestyle. She was a nurse and a ranch wife. She gave me advice and friendship and smiles and support. We talked of her boys and grandkids. Of my kids. Of ranch life.
We were interrupted by A. and her new baby. Her baby gift from me is a photography shoot of her little family… and I reminded her that the fall colors were fading fast. We’ll make a date.
Then in comes V. and J. The cutest couple in town. I’d hate to hazard a guess at their ages… but he is curled like an autumn leaf… she is spry and willowy… full of energy like an aspen leaf! I think I would adopt them if I could. P. and I continue our discussion for a few more minutes and then we separate. The library is definitely a happening place in Ten Sleep… and no… We DON”T whisper in there!
I’ve spent hours in town. I caught up with some gossip… “Didja hear your neighbors found an unexploded bomb from WWII in their barn? Had to call in the bomb squad from Casper to detonate it!” I caught up with the town list of upcoming activities… Next is the Harvest Dinner. The BIG fundraiser for the library and ambulance in Ten Sleep. Of course, that also means the beginning of HUNTING SEASON… evidenced by the various hunting camps already installed along the highway.
I caught up with old friends… and they were happy to see I’d “come in out of the hills” for a bit. I am refreshed. There is life out there.Find me here!