Friday, September 12, 2008

Catching up (and making up)

Well, if you've been following along, you've probably noticed that I've been pretty lax with the details lately. We've just been hummin' along, and getting on the computer has fallen by the wayside, so the details don't make it to type here. Fortunately for all those enquiring minds, I forgot to put our laundry in the dryer tonight, so I have a bit of extra time while the troops sleep and the clothes dry to catch up with YOU!

First, let me take you back as far as Bismarck where we enjoyed the Dakota Zoo. We discovered a MYSTERY surrounding their alligator exhibit, or perhaps only one alligator. While taking photos of Regie's cousin (ala LA Zoo Regie), I discovered the camera was taking black pictures. Just black. But ONLY when I took a picture of ONE alligator. All the other gators were fine with their photos being taken, and the shot of E worked out just fine. I even manually changed the camera settings to WIDE OPEN, as LONG as I could hold it still (a long fraction of a second) and still, not much came through! Hmmm...the Mystery of the Dakota Zoo!

The mystery of the turtle is answered in the captions (added tonight). We were headed down the two-lane paved county road toward Bridgeport, NE after a wonderful farm stay when I spotted a rock in the middle of my lane. Just as I was about to straddle it I discovered it had an oddly turtle shape to it. So I pulled over, walked back and discovered this poor little sand turtle with his legs all pulled in and only the tip of his head out, his eyes searching for the next opening for his highway crossing. Clearly I understood when he piddled all over my hand when I picked him up to share with the girls, then to set him off the road, away from the road. Sure hope he was going that way! :)

The donkeys are wild and live in herds at Custer State Park. The park is full of wildlife, but these are the only that approached to be hand fed and pet (once they were fed). The burro colt liked motorcycles better than cars, so we weren't able to get close to him.

Today we began our day with a visit to the Ingalls Homestead just south of DeSmet, SD. We spent half a day there even though they didn't have their summer activities going. With calves, colts and kittens to pet, machinery to experience, structures to explore and a trail to walk, there was no lack of things to do. Only hunger and the need to continue south drew us away.

Now we're in Sioux Falls, SD enjoying a waterpark in the hotel, hot showers, laundry (ahem!) and comfy beds before sending Mr. B to the airport tomorrow afternoon. It's been nice having him with us this week, and the girls were especially thrilled to hold Daddy's hand, sit on his lap, hike with him, eat with him, just BE with him. We all look forward to getting home, though as E put it, "there's still so much we want to see!"

The girls and I continue on our Lewis & Clark route now, meet up with my Uncle Jerry and Aunt Kathy in Oklahoma soon, then will be home in time for V's birthday in October.

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