Chairman Bao is a Shih Tzu. We travel a lot. I drive. He watches. We've logged at least 10,000 miles and he's never once said, Sweetheart, don't you think you should stop and ask someone?

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Couldn't leave Sioux Falls without seeing the epononymous falls, could we? So here they are. Not exactly Niagara, but pretty formidable if all you've got is a bark canoe.

You can just glimpse the beginnings of Falls Art over my left shoulder. This is a major, annual local art festival and we stumbled serendipidously right into the middle of it -- and stumbled out again several hours later with two wonderful pieces of pottery, a little nymph with turquoise stained glass wings and a small painting. As I always say, you don't have to be Peggy Guggenheim to collect art. You just have to know what you like.

Cornfields gradually gave way to grazing cows as we headed west into "Dances With Wolves" country. 200 years ago, all this belonged to the Lakota, Nakota and Dakota, the people of the Seven Council Fires. When the Spanish arrived in the 1600s, they'd already been here for 20,000 years, hunting buffalo. I guess they thought they'd be here forever.

We stopped at the Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center. It was awesome. Dioramas, time-lines, artifacts, art. All beautifully done. Bao learned the Lakota word for dog. It's sunka (pronounced shun-ka). The Lakota kept dogs as pets.

We spent the night in a lovely little motel on the outskirts of an extremely small town called Oacoma, on the north bank of the Missouri River. Lewis and Clark came through here in 1804, when it was all Indians and buffalo.

They're long gone, the Indians and the buffalo herds. Now it's paved highways, and the ubiquitous, golden arches. But you know what? We're not all that different from the Lakota, thinking the land is ours, and will be forever.

On to Rapid City.


Blogger Betty said...

Bao doesn't seem particularly interested in the falls.

3:13 PM

Blogger Erin Toft said...

Hello Gail! This is Erin, the artist you are purchasing the lovely large nude from out of Sioux Falls! I just wanted to confirm some details with you so that we can make shipping arrangements ASAP.

I am so glad that I was able to meet you, and I hope your tour is going swimmingly. Say hi to the pup for me. Hope to hear from you soon! You can also give me a call on my cell (605)940-6945.

4:23 PM


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