Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Where Do I Begin?

A mind-boggling number of things have happened over the last month or so, and I hardly know where to begin. Here are the cliff notes, since I'm very sleepy. (Long story.)

Tina has moved up here now, and is staying with us in the mother-in-law shack, more elegantly known as The Cottage. She is NOT using the outhouse, or the funny little potty in the closet that rests above a hole in the floor. Um, charmingly rustic.

Also now living with us are Tina's 2 dogs and 3 cats. Clancy has made the adjustment much better than Diesel. Diesel, still weakened after his bladder crystals trouble and more than a week in the animal hospital, made no protest at first. Now he poofs to 3x his normal size and chases the interlopers all over the house, hissing and spitting at them. Who n
eeds TV?

Last Thursday we left for camp meeting in Bozeman, MT. Dad met us there with a load of Tina's stuff plus Damon and Devon, and we all camped together. With electricity, a skillet,
and a kettle, we were able to concoct an amazing variety of culinary camping delights.

I played and sang, and all went well. Being the bashful sort (in some ways - I wasn't nervous talking to and singing for however-many-hundreds of people, but was definitely shy about talking to all of them afterwards), I snuck right off and changed, put my hair up, and generally rendered myself anonymous. Hey, I looked like everyone else who was camping...

On the way home, Dad broke down in Miles City. We didn't find out till about 2 hours from home. Dad couldn't go off and leave the stuff in the truck while he hiked to a motel, and sleeping sitting up with both boys in the truck didn't sound like much fun. There was nothing for it but for me to turn right around and go back down there as soon as I got home.

It was 2:15 am by the time I got down there, and then there was room for the boys to sleep in the back of my car, while Dad and I each got a whole seat to ourselves, one in each vehicle. Which is why I'm so tired. Camping for 3 nights, sleeping in the car the 4th, and last night it was soooooo late when we got home, and I looked so awful I could have starred in any number of horror films.

The storm we drove through was incredible. Hail in the dime- to nickel-sized range, rain by the celestial bucketful, and lightning striking all around us for hours. This was the day after a tornado did a can opener impersonation on the sports arena in Billings, about three hours after we went through. (Some of our friends turned out to have been there at the time the twister struck.) In the picture below, the headlights belong to Dad, with Damon and Devon in there with him, and there is just a sliver of the storm we had just come through.

On the subject of bad weather, a local woman in Froid was killed last week when a tornado or microburst rocked her house off its foundations and threw her a great distance. Many people in this area knew her, and grieve her loss. She was
only 10 years older than Jack and me, and her funeral was today.

Those of you who have known me for a long while are probably aware of my ongoing quest to get an actual lightning photo. You have seen scads of sad and sorry attempts to capture those elusive little fellas through a lens. Well yesterday, after hours of fruitless efforts, I finally caught one.

Until the next adventure,
Noni Beth

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