Tuesday, April 03, 2007

"Still too muddy to ride horsies"

You can imagine the disappointed looks on our girl's faces as we uttered those words after repeated hopeful phone calls to the Flying W Guest Ranch several mornings in a row. The rainstorm that drenched the eastern part of the state was attempting to drown our darling daughter's dreams of spring breakin' via horseback on the open range

However, the Holidome and all it's distractions proved to be excellent parental planning on our part as our family shifted gears and took full advantage of the indoor pool facilities, jacuzzi, sauna, and steam room, 9-hole migi-golf, ping pong, shuffleboard (ahem), and foosball table in the game room.

Our first few hours after check-in, we spent so much time at the pool and jacuzzi that our wrinkles had wrinkles. I channeled a few lessons from my youth and demonstrated for C the finer points of push shots and pull shots on the foosball table, while PK showed me the effectiveness of chasing the brightly colored miniature golf ball with the putter, rather than just hitting and aiming it toward the hole.

While abiding of the Griswold Family "Vacation" facilities at the Holiday Inn, we put our mortar board hats back on and hit the nearby sites for some class and culture of the historical kind.

The docent at the Black Kettle Museum in Cheyenne, took it upon herself to ensure that the girls completed the required tasks to received their "Junior Ranger" badges complete with coloring activity book and "pinning of the badges" ceremony. They totally dug that.

We tallied forth under warnings from the Museum Lady that the trail at the nearby Washita Battlefied Site would still be muddy going, but we should have it all to ourselves.

While we strolled the sacred grounds where the Custer led massacre of Black Kettle and members of his Cheyenne tribe took place, we tried to put some perspective of why there is a monument to this area into C's head. Finding it too difficult to explain the concepts of wholesale slaughter and eminent domain to a 7-year old, we stopped reading from the laminated narrative brochure provided by the Parks Service and instead focused on the natural surroundings, the spring bloom of colors, and the red Oklahoma mud that was quickly collecting on the girl's long pants.

Lunch was to be found back in the town of Cheyenne, in an old Catholic Church. A Mexican family had recently relocated to the old church, hung up a few well placed zarapes and other TJ paraphernalia and reopened the once hallowed doors to a new congregation of hungry country dwellers.

I had a trio of some pretty darn good carne asada street tacos, S did proud with her spinach enchiladas and the girls stuck with their tried and true "chips and cheese" standby, while taking full advantage of their God-given right to forkfulls of food off their parents plates.

Next up, the final installment -- back on Route 66 for a farewell to Spring Break '07.

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