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Sunday, April 22, 2012
We had a delightful day, save one minor incident, at the tall grass prairie preserve. Richard was our tour guide and lead us to some really cool places. We found an old abandoned chapel on the way, visited a hilltop graveyard in the middle of nowhere, saw an abandoned rock quarry, bison, coyote, deer, scissortails ( our state bird) and unfortunately, a scorpion. ( our unfortunate incident was that Scott got stung by a scorpion while lifting a cool limestone rock to add to our flower garden). Remembering old westerns where the looser of a cowboy arm wrestling contest was subsequently stung by a scorpion and died a horrible death, scott became concerned about the sting and we headed to town to make sure he would be ok. Thankfully we had the presence of mind to stop a rancher and to google scorpion stings on Richard's cell phone ( once we were in range). The rancher assured us that if there was going to be a problem we would already know and google confirmed so we backtracked our 15 minute trek on dirt roads back to the spot we intended to hike and paint. Scott was fine. I brought two books on tall grass wild flowers and edible wild plants. We found tons of wild flowers and most memorable was indigo, wood sorrel,( which we found to be a delicious lemony snack ) , wild iris. Although I pointed to delicious recipes for milkweed, I couldn't convince the guys that it was worth gathering.
Richard and Scott had camped in the area previously ( a couple of years ago ) so they knew of some beautiful spots to paint. They left me sitting beside a beautiful little stream and they hiked on upstream. Richard found the saw that he left up there two years ago and subsequently forgot it again and left it in our car :-)
I was able to knock out two worthy little sketches and the guys were able to go exploring.... ( them on a large level, me on a smaller level )
After 6 hours of driving and hiking in the prairie, and on the way back to civilization I commented " Ya know, this landscape reminds me of Scott's trip hunting in Wyoming. I wonder if there is any deer hunting up here, even though we haven't seen a single deer." As I said the word, " deer" one crossed right in front of us! We got a big kick out of that, let me tell ya.
Richard wanted to make sure we stopped at his favorite rib place in a small town on the way home. Those of you who know Scott, know how picky he is about his ribs, having been spoiled on Memphis BBQ. Not willing to take a chance of being disappointed, he ordered something else. Richard let us both try one of his ribs. Needless to say, they won Scott's stamp of approval and we will definitely be going back there again. Apparently, according to newspaper clippings on the wall, the place has won numerous awards on it's ribs.
A good time was had by all. Enjoy the pics. Expect to see some of these Scenes in new paintings.