Vetsunited

Home | Meet The Family | OUR HONORARY VETERANS | Fun Pages | I came home- by Gary Kendell | Jack Henshaw Tunnel Rat | Pages of Friends | In Memory Of Our Fallen Heroes | Tribute To Our Angel Kat | Women Vets | Photos of Friends | In Memory of Jennie R. Le Fevre | In Memory of Jim Talley | July 4th | Veterans Day | Betty Davis Tribute Page | In Memory of PJ
Fifth Year The Old West

Old West Story

 After 5 years of planning The day has finally come for our group to meet face to face at our birthday celebration in St. Louis.  What a great time we will have  meeting everyone and enjoying a peaceful weekend just getting acquainted .  It will certainly be a birthday celebration to remember.

 

 Jo says…"what is that strange smell?"  Dave tells her not to worry…..it is his special bbq sauce…"but Dave why is there  purple looking smoke coming from the grills?   What are you guys up to?"

Bill and Steve just smiled like they had  some big  secret.   "There’s something very wrong here", says Jo as we all became enveloped  within that cloud of smoke.   "I told you…This is not just any bbq sauce" said Dave…before he could finish explaining the smoke overtook us as we coughed and and choked  gasping for every breath…."Oh my guys…what have you got in that bbq sauce?"asks Jo.    When the smoke cleared we find that we have entered a new dimension.   Actually, an old one as it appears we have been placed     

Back in time.  "Holy cow!  Where are we?"   This must have been what the guys had been planning all along!!  A wild west adventure!   I’ll never look at bbq sauce again in quite the same way.    

The year is 1880…"Oh my I sure hope this wasn’t a big mistake, but it’s a little late to worry about it now”, says Jo. 

 

Jo writes…Well it seems we are here guys so I guess I will have to trust that you know what you're doing.    That tends to make me just a tad nervous…a rather large tad actually.  I see we have  have supply wagons loaded and  It appears We’ve got food for a couple of months if we’re careful,  along  with what our men can find in fresh meat, that should  carry us through.   We have a couple hundred pounds of beans and the usual dry goods so we should do ok. 

Are our scouts ready?  Sure hope we don’t run into any of those Lakota Indians .    Time to head-um  up and move-um out!!!   Wagons HO!!!    Dave, Bill and Steve decided they had better stay close to our herd of cows while Chief calls on some of the guys to go with him to have a look at the trail ahead before we proceed.   Bev and PJ were comparing bonnets which were quite the fashion, while Kat and Betty were wondering where exactly we are, vowing to get even with those renegades that put us here in the first place.  "Doesn’t look much like St. Louis even a hundred years ago"….Bev says. …"and all I can see is cactus and sagebrush where I planted my hydrangeas."     

Bev writes   

 Yes PJ.. those are very pretty Bonnets but I don't do hats. They mess up my hair, so you can give mine to one of the other girls.  Now remember guys, you promised to keep the snakes away from me. If not you will end up taking me out West in a pine box!!  Where is Chief?   Oh, that's right, he took Danny and Jeff with him to check out the pass ahead.  Sure hope thar ain't no Indians up in dem Dar hills!  Betty..have you and Kat figured out where we are yet?  Didn't think so...says Bev with a smirk on her face...kind of hard to do without map quest right?  But the sun did rise over there this morning so we must be heading in the right direction!  You know girls...I wonder.....really wonder....if we're in the 18th century we might run into some of our famous hero's???  Ya think?  Hopefully Chief and the guys will find the Long Ranger & Tonto up ahead then we will be safe for sure!  And if the Rifleman shows up with his son Mark, they can ride with us.  I sure had a crush on Mark..(Johnny Crawford) he can ride in my wagon anytime!  Don, you haven't said a word, are you okay?  Oh..that's right...how are you going to predict the weather without all the 21st century technology????

 DON

WELL yep I guess so, going to have to see about some weather AU NATURAL.

Let me find some bugs, snakes and local flora and then I can tell ya all bout what time of the year it tis

Would hate to get caught in a snowstorm or even worse, since it appears to be high noon and by the position of the sun I would guess a snow storm is out, as it is fairly comfy out here.  My guess is early JUNE somewhere in the SOUTHWEST of probably New Mexico or Arizona.   Let the scouts figure that one out.

Gotta find me a couple caterpillars and ..HEY let me climb this big ole rock over here and see if I can see sumthing.

Yes this is good ...HEY JO send someone up here , YOU ALL.... just at that moment  there is the sound of stones

falling down the OTHER SIDE and you watch as Don disappears from sight over the edge.  

Steve

At the commotion,  Dave Bill and Steve ride up.  Dave jumps off his horse and eases up to the edge of the cliff to see if he can see Don. He hollers back to Bill and Steve to get him some rope that Don is hung on a ledge. Bill grabs a rope from Steve and tells him to go get more from the wagons since Chief and Danny are out scouting and Dick , Jeff and DW are with the herd.

Steve rides back to the group of wagons where all the ladies are and throws a cloud of dust up when he slides his horse in.  All them ladies start hollering that he is getting all their washing dirty, but Steve tells them that Don has fallen over a cliff and he needs more rope. Well Ms PJ jumps right up and hollers to them other ladies (Kat, Jo, Bev, Donna, Marica Leisa and Betty) to go round up some rope and bring to her. Boy them gals took off like something was after them. When them other ladies bring the rope to Ms PJ why she just flungs it over her saddle and swangs up on her horse and hollers lets go save Don. And off she goes dust flying everwhar and leaves Steve there with his mouth agape.

Meanwhile back on the ridge Dave and Bill have got what little rope they had aswung over the ledge and are waiting for Steve to return.

Don is laying there on that ledge a not moving and Dave and Bill are afeared for him. They can see that he has a cut over his right eye.

About that time Ms PJ comes up that ridge a with an arm full of rope and old slow poke Steve right behine her. Dave grabs another rope and ties it to the first one and then ties another.   This time it is long enough to reach poor Don..

In the mean time Ms PJ rides back to the wagons to get some bandages and canteens full of water and tell Ms Kat to come with her.  And also tells them other ladies to start fixin something to eat for all us when we get back.

When Ms PJ gets back to the ridge them boys have him up and alayed down and trying to see whats wrong with is head. Ms PJ tells them to start a fire and her and Ms Kat was gonna fix him up.

 Well them two gals went to work on ole Don and afore you knowit he was a sittin up smileing and looking all glassie eyed.

Can’t say I blame him what with them two fine lookin ladies a doing over him.

I’ll Tell you one thing Steve said to Dave and Bill, That thar Ms PJ would do to ride the river with and you see the way that Ms Kat bats them pretty eyes of hers?  My, My!

Well they ride off  together back to camp…………

Kat:

We all breathed a sigh of relief to have Don back safe and sound all together again.  Kat had been asleep and dreaming that we were all on a another adventure, laughing softly to her self she rolled over in what she thought was a bed and fell on to the hard rocky surface.   Darn it`s not a dream she muttered,  and she  watches as Jo  is approaching with  a lot of nasty looking stuff in her hands and said "come on Kat you won this we`re all hungry and we want to eat so clean girl, clean".   Kat looks around and Betty is no where in sight.  What am I supposed to clean with?  I know how to pluck chickens but to gut rabbits!   Oh good grief, can`t do much about it, maybe find  something to do it with I guess, Kat grumbles "knew we should have gone to Holiday Inn". There is a  yell more like a scream coming from where Jo and Bev are standing, Bev yelled "snakes",  PJ came up with her gun at the ready. I had finished with the gutting using a rusty knife I had found.  I went with PJ with my hat pin handy,  where we reached Jo and Bev.   Jo was saying sternly to Bev "get a hold of your self!!   All it is, is a piece of rope". We all  laughed but poor Bev needed a beer.   Dave said she had to pay for it,  even if it was warm.  He is becoming a real mean wagon master.!!!!  By this time the rabbits were on spits cooking away after I cleaned them in real good way that Betty had taught me......Another yell went up we all said oh no not again but this time it wasn`t Bev.   PJ and the  gang  had been posted to look out and saw some thing riding in the distance.  "Indians!!!! and they don`t look friendly", the women screamed at the wagon masters "what do we do now", they asked?   "How the hell should we know"? coming to their senses,  Bill said....... 

  JEFF:

all in unison "Boy we sure do need our Scouts right about now!" Then Bev, Kat and Leisa at the same moment exclaimed "Well where are they?? Off playin' in the cow patties I'm sure.....Always puttin' their hands where they don't belong!!!"  About that time PJ chimes in...."They're Scouts...they're out front of us Scoutin'!" In a half panicked voice Jo says.. "Well they'd better be Scoutin' them behinds of theirs back here and I mean quick too!!" About that time Betty, Steve and Dave notice riders coming up from behind the group...."Look...Riders!!!!" they yell.  Don and Dick scream " Injun ambush.....They comin' up behind us!!"  Setting everyone straight, Marci calmly says...."Those aren't Indians...Thats our Scouts."  Sure enough, and ridin' like thunder come dust covered Danny, Chief and Jeff.  "Indians are comin' after us.....DO SOMETHING!" Kat begs as she points in the direction of a rising cloud of dust.  The Scouts dismount and mosey over to a slight hill for a better view....Where Jeff slips his prize Yankee Spyglass he relieved a Yankee Colonel of during the Battle of Shiloh from his boot, and is most proud of by the way, and says..."Lets have us a look here.....Got a good idea them ain't Injuns."  About that time Danny slaps his forehead and yells..."OH NO!!! DON'T TELL ME.....ITS DUDLEY!!!!!"  "Yup" says Jeff...."Its Dud."  Knowing Dudley as they do, Don, Kat, Bev, Jo, PJ and Marci all are excited to see Dud again, leaving the rest of the group scratching their heads and asking "What the hell is a Dudley"?????  Jo having a big grin on her face reassures them by saying...."Oh..You're about to find out what a Dudley is".  "Looks like more than one out there to me, and they got a wagon too..." says Danny as he looks through the spyglass towards the small dot that is rapidly getting larger and larger. "Yup" Jeff says again...."Bringin' a few of old pahdnahs of mine back from the day.....They won't be stayin' long though....They usually have to stay in the saddle."  "Stay in the saddle????.......And what does that mean???.....Sounds like outlaws to me!!!!!!" yells an unhappy looking Bev, arms folded across her chest, not to mention that left foot incessantly tapping and stirring up a little kinda tornado around her foot.  About that time a big cloud of dust rolls up with Dudley and the surprise riders somewhere inside.  As the dust clears PJ and Kat move in for a closer look at the newcomers, as do the rest of the group.  Jumping from the wagon Dudley proceeds to take a big Dudley stretch, while Jeff and Danny walk over to the new arrivals...."Howdy Billy....Long time friend......Doc, Charlie, Jose Chavez Y Chavez...How ya'll doin?" Jeff says as he gets a handshake from the Billy charachter.  PJ walks up with her hands on her hips and stares this Billy guy right in his face and says with a Tennessee drawl... " Boy you sure do look familiar.....Where ya from??" Following PJ comes the rest of the ladies.....ALL staring intently into Billy's face.  "I know who you are now!!" screams Kat......"You're Billy the Kid.....I saw your MUG in the post office in St. Louis!!!!"  After hearing of Kats discovery all the guys in the group gather round Billy and his buddies, shaking hands and asking questions about all the bad things Billy has done.  Which leads Jo to ask Dudley whats in the wagon...To which Dud replies..."Nuttin"....Not being satisfied with that response Jo quickly runs over to the wagon and pulls back the blankets covering the contents.  "BEER......GALLONS OF BEER!!!!" says a really not so surprised Jo......As Dud turns to make good an escape from those glaring eyes of Jo's, he meets an even more glaring set belonging to Bev, and this set is much closer than Jo's.  Bev proceeds to grab Dud by his left ear, and gently <G> pulls him towards her where the questioning begins about where all that beer came from. Soon Kat, Jo and PJ  begin adding their interrogation skills and poor Dud finally cracks and spills the beans about the booze. Seems Dud and Billy's gang decided to rob a brewery somewhere in New Mexico Territory. This in turn led to Steve asking if any of the gang had any idea of where we are exactly.....Well...Even sorta where we are would be good.  "Yup....Ya'lls in Kansas...."Bout time for ya'll to turn right and head up into Dakota Territory"......says Billy as he slowly strolls over to Dud, who is sitting on a big rock looking like a huge fuzzy doofus with his left ear still in Bev's firm grasp. Cautiously approaching, Billy leans way back and sticks out his arm as far as it will go, handing Dud a folded piece of paper, while keeping his eyes on Bev the whole time......Obviously scared s*&^less of Bev and not wanting to tangle with the rest of the ladies either....Billy yells "Lets ride boys!!" and bolts to his horse. Off they ride heading south towards New Mexico. As all the guys get together in a huddle and start talking about how cool that was to actually meet Billy the Kid....Steve and Dave are discussing maybe riding with the gang if they ever meet up again.  Dick begins wondering if the gang ever duck hunts, and the two Don is just standing there shaking his head wondering about Steve and Dave. About that time Betty notices something shiny sticking up from the prairrie grass, and as she bends over to pick it up

PJ  (Palamity Jane, who ain't skeered of nothin'):

Betty looks at the strange object in her hand, with perplexity.  PJ had followed her over there, and she said "I KNOW WHAT THAT IS!....it's a sextant.!" 

Kat immediately blushes and whines "Oh no!!!!!  Those perverts.....I'm glad they left!. Hard telling what they had in mind for us all." 

Jo impatiently says, "Oh for Pete's sake, Kat....get over it!....it's nothing perverted!  It will help guide us so we won't get lost anymore!!  And the one who'd most likely to be able to use it would be Don A..........HEY DON!!!!!!!!!!  Look what Betty found!!!!!"  Don breaks out in a grin from ear to ear, knowing he can 'spot' the stars and keep us on track.  If we relied on Dave's compass, it's hard telling where we'd end up!!!!!

  Dick is keeping a log of all the happenings since we left St. Louis, and he can hardly wait to write all of the Dudley visit down, including shy Kat's comments on the sextant!!!  But with his creative mind, he's intensely curious about the slip of paper that Billy the Kid handed Dudley before he left.  He figures he's going to have to cozy up to Dud and gain his trust, then try to weasel that information out of him.

(What Dick doesn't know is that Dudley is cunning and shrewd and not about to be tricked by anyone, but Dud has a weakness for beer!)

PJ's watching Dick watching Dudley, and with her astounding perception, knows what he's thinking, since her curiosity about the paper is as great as his.  She sidles up to him and says, "Dick, this can be done!  Wait until Dud has had two or three kegs of beer and he becomes a pussycat.......then we can find out what that paper's all about and how it's going to affect our wagon train!"   She then proceeds over to Dud for her annual bear hug, and tells him he looks sooooo tired and thirsty and dusty; would he like a nice soothing beer to wash the trail dust down?????  Dud's eyes light up, and he says "Is a bullfrog waterproof????? Of course I'd like a beer!!!!"  And then the game begins!  Dud doesn't like to drink alone (although he'll force himself if necessary!), so PJ signals Dick to come over and join Dud.  Of course, Dave, Steve, and Bill come running too......like thirsty puppies with their tongues hangin' out!!!!......and PJ whispers to Dick, "Not to  worry...These three will wipe out long before Dud's thirst is quenched, so don't fret.  Just keep talking to Dud and be sure to only SIP your beer......no chug-a-lugging or we'll never get that paper!!!!!!!!  I'll be watching while I help the other ladies rustle up some grub!"

Time passes.... the grub is ready........the three ever alert scouts are passed out with their glassy eyes wide open.....and Dud's still going strong! But Dick finally reaches for the paper, while Dud's chugging, then eases away from Dud's side.  He turns his back to Dud and signals to PJ.  They huddle together to read what's on the paper, then both turn white and gasp out loud!!!! They look at each other in horror,  for, on the paper, they see.................

 Don Warshaw

Sitting Bull has been killed by white men and his murdeous heathen indians have taken revenage on yet another wagon train leaving no survivors behind,  heading in our direction.  As the plot thickens and they contemplate on what they should do....a single rider can be seen approaching in the distance.  Who is this rider and what does he want with them?

Don who has kept silent the whole time (who is really Captain Warshaw, a U.S. Marshall) rides into our camp as our horses spook from the clouds of dust stirred.   I’m Captain Don, U.S. Marshal…what are you people doing out here in the middle of no where?  Don’t you know there are dangerous Indian war parties in the area?  We all look at Captain Don in amazement as reaches into his saddle bag and pulls out a piece of jerky and takes a big bite.  What do you suggest we do asks Ms. PJ. 

I suggest you all follow me into Sante Fe, about 37 miles yonder way over them thar hills.. .. where you all will be safe.   You best mount up now and lets get out of here!!   Keep it quiet and let’s skeedaddle!!  As we got into our wagons to follow Captain Don he draws his 50 caliber sharps rifle and sets his scope…a loud boom was heard by all.    What was that for asked Jo?  Captain Don tells us to look up there on that distant ledge where we could barely make out a lone Indian scout as he fell from the cliff.  Danny says, good shot Don…that must be 800 yards away atleast!!   Alright lets haul horsey and get you folks out of here says Captain Don as our wagons moved against the red skies of the sunset.   

Dick:

So now we’re heading north out of Santa Fe, finally!  It took us more time to get our gear re-outfitted than it did to make this jouney all the way here…oh boy…I wonder if everyone is aware we have to go north through Raton Pass.  That’s a real ugly route but no way to get up into Colorado and onto a good trail unless we take our chances.  If we’re not hung up in snowdrifts or fall off one of those trails in the pass, we’ll be ok.  By the way, “Has anyone remembered Debby?  I haven’t heard whether or not she joined when we were in Kansas.  “Oh yeah”, I was told…that she did join up back then.  It was so long ago, I hope we have all of our group together here.  As we inched along across the snow, it was with more than a little trembling by all.  When we did sneak a peek across the abyss…we swept our eyes straight forward immediately.  We felt sorry for those wrecks we came across but we could do nothing for them.  Wagons twisted, wheels broken and out of our site we could hear the the wheezing of our horses as they struggled to pull our load.  Finally the trial we were following became wider, more leveled and easier to travel.  It was obvious we had reached a much higher altitude than when in Santa Fe although, there was still an uneasiness while making this journey.  How will we get to the main East, West trail?  Traveling the east side of those mountains was not easy.  We needed to find a river to carry us West…no such luck.  But wait!…maybe we could find a stream somewhere around Pueblo, Colorado that would put us close enough…naw…that won’t work.  We certainly can’t get these wagons to Aspen or even as far as Gunnison.  So, we continue on fearfully looking for a good spot large enough to make camp for the night  where we would circle our wagons.

Hey, now…Who’s making all of those giggling sounds in one of the wagons?  Where are our trusty “ramrods” for this roundup to Oregon?  When I said I’d drive lead, they all just disappeared!
Very strange or am I just hallucinating, after traveling in the blinding snow on the just completed trail?  Hey!!  Who’s in that wagon??  PJ rode up alongside my lead wagon and said she had also heard some strange noises.  I thought that since we had no wagon masters to guide us, I was going to begin to get the wagons in a circle…then maybe we’d just see about that wagon and those noises.  We proceeded to bark orders and to our surprise, everyone of our gang obeyed without question nor backtalk…other than the disgruntled guys grumbling about a “takeover”of their jobs!!!  The wagons were soon set and PJ and I went to get to the bottom of what was going on in that wagon as more giggling could be heard.   Now we can hear voices as we quietly approached, still unable to identify either of the 2 distinctively. 

Suddenly, from behind us came a huge  ROAR” almost like a thundering waterfall and when we turned, we were scared it looked like a bear...12 ft. tall...actually it was a bear but it was up on its hind legs and it looked as though it was expecting us momentarily to become his next meal. We tried to run...but couldn't.  We were frozen by fear!  I know I was unable to move as if my feet were glued to the ground.  PJ screamed!!  I need my gun!!  Her screams brought the gang out of all of the wagons...even the cook from the chuck wagon came running.  Strangely, this must have startled the bear as much as we had been frightened by it.  With a roar and then another roar the animal was quickly out of sight.  PJ and I stood looking at each other.  I think we were both very sheepish at having been literally "scared out of our wits."  Guess that's better than being "scared to death, right?"  Oh, yes, the voices from that one wagon...we never did know who was in there or whether there were only two.  (we heard only two) but one thing for sure, they weren't up to any good!  Our fearless leaders remained within the circle of our wagons which was our best defense and line of protection should there be trouble...and they felt safer there too.  PJ and I had strayed around the outer perimeter.  The elusive voices could still be heard coming from one of the wagons.  As we approached closer it became quiet and when we took a look inside, no one was there!  

Food was quickly prepared by the KP detail…These ladies did a whale of a job cooking rabbit and we were all looking forward to getting some real buffalo meat as we went further North and West.    We ate our meal and afterwards, talked about the journey of the day and wondered where it would lead us tomorrow.  I kept thinking that if we could go up to Denver and far enough to find the Missouri or some other river...we could float our way west.   This idea went over with a thud!  No maps, just intuition.  The girls seemed to have the best sense of direction...had to admit that, but once a few miles back when we met a couple of trappers on the trail, we were going to ask for some specific directions...but didn't.  Despite their pleas, we guys decided to stick to our plan and go our way and would get to Oregon in due course even if right now we weren't sure what exactly what that course was going to be.  We had finish chow and we even helped the women wipe the pots and pans and then set the fire for the night.  It was still chilly, windy and the wailing of the wind through the trees gave off a weird, wounded sound that went through you to the bone.  Where would tomorrow find us?  Again, we set ourselves to making that decision but within a few minutes after we had finished the rest of the chores the snow began to fall once more.  We looked at each other with more than just fear, knowing this trip would be risky but were thinking more of the great adventure we would have.  The possibility of failure never took over.  Tomorrow we would find a Western passage...but how and where we didn't know.

We had veered so far South, we were far off of the usual trails and at the mercy of both weather and our own lack of knowlege of the territory!  Foolish...how did we get into this century anyway?  We must have all been thinking the same useless thoughts.  What was is that BBQ sauce that could propell us into this mess?  We would have to get down to some serious business and figure out what to do or surely we will perish.  Although not being one of the "trail bosses", I finally stood up and said:  "I can't speak for anyone else, just myself, but I'm headed to Denver.  There will be shelter, food and all the other supplies that we need.  And if we're lucky, might be able to hire a guide to lead us Westward"  No one uttered a word.  I thought that kat looked like she agreed with my determined  course of action, but I couldn't be sure.  Maybe Jo will take over now and be able to convince the gals that we should go on to Denver, together.  As I was still speculating who might want to follow my lead, I realized I was already wrapped snug in my blankets and instead of being a reasonable voice standing  resolutely for a course of action...I was actually dropping off to sleep, quite unaware of my surroundings and oblivious to anything going on around me...UNTIL..   
Dave

Yep that sure was a nice town and thanks Dick for the quick tour. The girls behave? That will never happen. Heck you got this gal called PJ, thinks she Annie Oakley but PJ stands for Pajama Jane. Then you got this Ms Betty who nags you to death about everything, some one should give her a snake to play with, maybe that will keep her quiet. Then you got that quiet one over yonder named Leisa. Now she's ok never hear a peep from her and she pulls her weight with the chores. Now these other three, Bev, Jo, and Kat you got to watch out for. They're always planning some kind of mischievous thing. But we cut Bev some slack she brought along the ducks for us guys to BBQ. Now Deb, well not much background on her being from Kansas. There is rumor she rand with Jessie James in Missouri, so maybe she's rich from all them train robberies. Anyone marrying her will never have to work again. You can sit back and barbecue every day and shoot ducks. Oh oh think Bev heard me about shooting ducks. I better hide.

BETTY

Unanimous decision!  We are on our way to Denver!  Even with all the warnings from Dave about us women, we will forge ahead, the women a strong united front!  But wait!  Somebody's riding up.  Everyone jumps out of their wagon to see who is there.  Now that is a sight!  You wouldn't believe what some of them wear to sleep in!  There Dick is, he was sleep walking!  He is coming back to camp being led by this masked man!  Don A says "Who was that masked man?"  Dick says "I don't know but he gave me this silver bullet!"  Don W, U.S. Marshall, upholding the law of the land,  says "That was the Lone Ranger.  Tonto's a good scout!  He could be a big help to us!"

 Bill had BBQ set up for supper tonight - hard to get those beans to stay on that stick but we did it!  Everyone is back in their wagon, trying not to think about what will happen tomorrow.  Then Steve and Jo start hollering: "Night, John Boy, night KitKat, night Dave boy, night DJ PJ, night Bill boy, night Miss Marci, night Don A boy, night Mona Leisa, night Jeff boy, night Betty Boop, night Dick boy, night Pam Ma'am, night Tom boy, night Donna Madonna, night Don W boy, night Bev (oblivious to all this!), night Danny Boy ('Oh, Danny Boy'! everyone singing together!), night everybody!  

 All of a sudden there is a scream from Steve aka snakecharmer!  He's been bitten by that rattle snake he hid in his wagon so Bev wouldn't be scared when we were on the prairie!  He is poisoned, we need to help him fast!  Jo yells for someone to apply a tourniquet to prevent the poison from going to his brain.  Jeff yells at PJ to tear a strip off of her dress...PJ says I'll tear a strip off of Bill's shirt but not my dress and she does!  Kat and PJ grab the strip to make the tourniquet and place it around Steve's neck.  Both pull real tight and Jo tells them "Not around his neck, you silly women.  The bite is above his right ankle"  Kat tells her that it makes sense to her to put it on his neck so the poison won't go to his brain!  Steve is a light shade of blue.  Bev faints. 

Now this Indian tribe comes into camp out of nowhere.  The Medicine Man approaches Steve and tells him they have heap good medicine for snake bite.  Steve tells them he'll do anything so he won't die.  Medicine is put on bite, Steve is healed instantly!  He runs over to Dave to tell him that this is real miracle, but Dave is GONE!  While everyone's attention was on the Medicine Man, the Chief of this tribe grabbed Dave and tied him on the pack mule which also had all our containers of BBQ Sauce!  Dave tried to tell the Chief he couldn't ride bareback.  Chief said "UGH!  Tough!   Going to camp on reservation.  Be daughter's husband."  Dave yelled!  "I'm already married!"  Chief said "UGH!  Too bad! , So Sad!  UGH!  More than one wife in my tribe. HOW!!!??! Old Indian trick!"   Steve who is cured now, sits there and plays on his banjo "See Ya Later, Alligator" and Jeff and Danny sing!

We are sure glad to have Dick here to help give direction because Dave is one of our leaders.  What will we do??!!!!!   Will we get him back??!!!!!  Do the women get to take over???!!!!!  (sounds good to me!!!)  Tune in tomorrow for the rest of the story!

DEB:

Now it's time for Deb to come in to her own.  What no one knows is her Umpity great grandma is the chief's daughter.  So. . .  Deb had to somehow convince the indian girl that she didn't want Dave because she was slated to marry Nathan and make a whole lot of blue eyed babies in about another 5 years.  Oh, and if she didn't, Deb would not exist! So, please, tell The Chief you don't want any of these guys. It came in the form of a prophecy from the " strange white medicine woman."

The ploy was so effective that the Chief offered to loan us a couple scouts to guide us on our way.  All would have worked well if Kat hadn't poked her head out of the wagon and entranced the brave who decided that he was madly in love with that paleface.

 PJ :

Dave was so happy to have escaped this "fate worse than death", that he ran as fast as his old legs would carry him, back to where his horse was.  He was so anxious to get away that he decided to vault over the rear of his horse, into the saddle..........just like Hopalong Cassidy.......but the problem occurred when his speed exceeded  the horse's patience!! 

 Just as Dave vaulted, horsey got tired of standing and shifted positions, lowering his head.  Dave sailed right on over the length of the horse and landed butt-first in a patch of Cholla (pronounced "choya") cactus!!!!!!!!  Wheeeeeeeeeee doggies, did that smart!!!!!!  The Indians learned some new battle cries from Dave's repertoire of screams!!!!

Several of the spines penetrated Dave's posterior, and the Indians were too busy rolling on the ground with laughter to render aid to him, so he had no choice but to grab his horse's reins and WALK all the way back to the wagon train. Hopefully someone there would help him to remove the owwies!!

 Meanwhile, back at the wagons,  Kat was all discombobulated by the smitten warrior.  She'd blinked those pretty eyes once too often and Cupid sent heap many arrows into warrior's heart!  Now this warrior, Skunk Who Runs, was determined to carry Kat back to his village and make her his squaw, and Kat was in a terrible predicament.  She was promised to a sailor in Oregon, named Ron, and needed to make Skunk Who Runs understand that she'd have to refuse his proposal on the grounds that her Water Warrior would be a tad bit upset if she didn't show up there pure and untouched and on time!!!!!!

   While she was pondering her problem, she heard a strange sound in the distance.  Seems everyone had heard it, and gathered to look and see what the "oooh,  yikes,  OWWW' sounds were and where they were coming from!   They finally realized that it was Dave and he was on foot leading his horse.  Everyone got worried that the horse had gone lame, because all our livestock was needed to get this trip accomplished.   As Dave neared, they realized the horse was just fine; it was Dave that was walking really funny!!!  Some of the guys went forward to take the horse and see what the problem was, and then..........................................

Marci:

Dudley came over and looked at Dave.... turning his head from side to side..reaches out and pulled a needle... Danny pipes up and says... looks like when Dave missed that horse he feel on to a cactus... Dudley enjoying himeself while picking out the needles as Dave groans... Marci looks around to see if she can see Donna anywhere?? Where or where did my little Donna go.. oh where or where could she be... She said she would meet me here by this big rock so we could set up the tent to hold a church service... I know everyone is grumbling about holding a church service in the middle of no where... but it is Sunday!!!, and after all we have been through... I think it is high time we thank the Lord for bring us all together and blessing us with such great weather.... Marci walks back over to the wagon camp to see if she can find "Getta Long Donna"... and smells this wonderful smell... Oh! Kat's been at it again... She is such a great cook!! ( I have always loved the way the BRit's cook................Just as I figured.. every one is grabbing at the chow and not one person has giving thanks unto the Lord for this great meal! Marci runs on heels   towards the wagons to see if she can find Donna.

Donna.... where are you?? Marci's find's Bev...... Bev. have you seen Getta Long Donna?  You know it is Sunday and she is our Chaplin... she said she would help me with that tent to hold our service but I can't find her anywhere.....Marci then gives Bev. one of her pretty please looks and ask if she wants to help set up the tent? Bev. replies:

  BEV:  

Me.. set up a tent?  Ahhh come on Marci you know how I break my nails every time I have to do that!  Getta Long Donna was just here!   She was on her way to the gift tent, at the next ROCK, to buy a new bible. She didn't have her other bible because she had no idea Dave's barbeque sauce was going to transport us out West this weekend.  It seems instead of food poisoning  Dave's sauce gave us a little "Mind Poison" now look where we're at!  My hair's a mess, nails broken and I need a bubble bath in my a nice HOT tub at home.  Marci, don't you just sometimes wonder how the hell we're going to get back to reality???  Sure glad I don't have to figure out that one...ANYWAY...back to the story...as we argue.. the sweet smell of food is coming from Kat's wagon.  Oh...here comes Getta Long Donna with her new bible rolling down the hill.   Okay, lets hurry girls and get this darn tent up so we can go eat....I sure hope Kat's cooking something I like....I'm not smelling fish am I?  Marci snaps her head around, like Linda Blair in the Exorcist, and yells "RIGHT BEV...FISH ON THE PRARIE?Boy girlfriend.. you need out of this fantasy quick!!  As we come closer to the group the smell becomes stronger and we figure out what the smell is...it's Dudley's beer breath!!   GOOD GRIEF, outta be a law against that!!  When we eat lets make sure Dud sits over there with the rest of the guys.  Bev yells over to Kat...supper sure is smelling good my dear.  I hope Donna's service is quick so we can get back over here and eat!   All of a sudden, there is a big bang and a cloud of smoke coming from Kat's wagon... the horses bolt and take off and the wagon starts going down the hill....darn, there goes our supper!!  What is Kat to do?  How is she going to stop that wagon...and what about our supper?

Kat

Kat drops all the cooking gear and hears a yell from the wagon as it rolls out of sight Dave is hanging out the back  we all rush to get a better look as the wagon reaches what we think  is a huge clump of trees but  think again it`s more cactus and Dave goes head first in to them boy is  he going to walk weird now!!!!!!!! that stops the fall and the men get the wagon and Dave back up with the help of the horses.

 After what seemed like an eternity of rocks and climbing up mountain after mountain we reached a huge lake so big we couldn`t see the other side, water yells Dave water he and Bill  out run every one else and Dave drinks greedily from the edge,  he spits it out and say`s oh my lord what the heck is this it`s all SALT. Don A  say`s  great we have reached Utah not far to go now gang.

After running like he did Dave starts to walk  real funny again,  any thing to do with the cactus we all think,  as we are wondering there is another yell coming from  Dave some one backed a wagon into him and he falls and just missed the camp fire it`s just not his day.........

Mean while PJ swears she is being followed.  Kat tells her not to be silly. It`s getting dark how can I see?   She answers, I know I am I`m from Tennessee and we know these things, just then there is  a sound of twigs being broken and out of the shadows comes Skunk who Runs and a buddy  who Skunk say`s  his  name is Nose always Drips who is real smitten with PJ but is too shy to tell her.  PJ say`s oh get out of here I have no time for this nonsense ..but Nose always Drips suddenly get`s bold and lifts PJ on to his horse and off they go with her yelling, get me away from him. She is having a hissy fit and Nose that Drips has claw marks all over him but he is not deterred.  He keeps on going with PJ firmly in place over his horse. Three day`s pass and PJ  re-appears with a slight smile on her face and we  ask where she has been but she won`t  tell us and say`s she never will.  We ask where Nose always Drips is but he has gone.

Back to Dave and his injuries.  He has been trying to coax the guys in to helping him but they are none to pleased with him  either after causing all the troubles with the women on the trip.  Seems like they are all mad at us whines  Dave.  Will someone please help this "falls on deaf ears"?  No help came and the women mutter that he will just have to walk funny till he  mends his way`s.

 Kat has been having to a terrible time with trying to get away from Skunk that Runs and  all the time explaining she has a sailor waiting for her, Steve see`s what she is going through and takes sympathy and goes up to talk to Skunk.  Betty tries too help but all PJ will do is look and laugh snidely. 

We all decide to eat and gather around the camp fire Bev say`s oh Kat rabbit again I had my heart set on fish.  Kat asks where the heck was she to get fish in the middle of the prairie?  Bev get`s all snitty that Kat answered her so abruptly.  Jo say`s sternly come on Kat, we all would like a change, its not Bev`s fault. Kat doesn`t answer just looks west ward with a dreamy look on her face.

Just then another shout brings every one up from their supper plates and there is a hooting  and a hollering and we are surrounded by what one of the guys say`s are Black Feet Indians. Dave yells do you think they have a medicine man to help me?  We all said sure Dave... go for it, they look real friendly.............Not!!!!!! ...........But Dave undeterred and in agony decides to chance it and  stands up waving a white flag.   No yells  the rest of us.  Get down Dave,  get down.  The indians looked plenty mean  but onward Dave goes.  One of the tribes men swoops down and hikes Dave up on to his horse and disappear in to the darkness then.............

DAVE

Well after being taken away  in the night I managede to escape. So instead of making my way back to the wagon train I ride a ways into darkness. After resting the night, I awoke and followed my instincts and headed south... Since everyone seemed angry with me so I thought I'ld try to hook up with Billy the Kid and his gang in New Mexico. I'm sure they'd like an extra gun. Well I figured the wagon train would get along without me, and some day maybe meet up with some of those on the wagon train again.  After I got to New Mexico I hooked up with Billy. Great bunch of guys in his gang. They all took me in cuz they knew I was "Bad To The Bone". We ran most of New Mexico partying, barbecuing ducks and chickens.  We rustled cattle from ranches,  a couple of prime steers, nice!  One night we barbecued a pig we took from this dumb farmer. We even traded beer and liquor to the injuns who were looking for them goofy ladies in that wagon train. After that it was all rest and relaxation as we barbecued and drank beer.

  BETTY:

We looked everywhere for Dave and knew we had to move on because our food and our time was running out.  Then our scouts found out Dave was in New Mexico and we were in Utah.  How did he manage to do that?!!  We have to go on and leave him...we can't doubleback.  HOWEVER!  The Indians are looking for those 'goofy ladies' in the wrong State!  HA!!!  Foiled again!

We are so far from Oregon with this route the wagon masters were determined to take we'll never make it!  Oh, why didn't they listen?!  There is only one way to make up our time.   All the men are ordered by PJ (she won't take NO for an answer!) to rope a steer and place it over the fire and pour on all of that magic BBQ sauce they've created so we can be transported northwest from Salt Lake City, Utah, to Idaho.  We have traveled so many miles today...our horses are tired, we are tired.  We still have to head northwest to Wyoming, go through the Snake River, through Idaho enroute to Oregon.  (see map of route which is attached!!!  Told you Dave that you should have taken a map!!! HA!)  The men finally locate a steer, and as it cooks we see the purple  smoke that we saw in St. Louis.  When the air clears, we are in Idaho!   Wagons and all!  And lo and behold!  Standing there by his wagon is Dave!  The purple smoke just up and grabbed him in New Mexico, transported him with us to Idaho!  He owes us one!  (or two or three or four!)

There are many mixed feelings as we get closer to our destination.  When we began, we were prepared for anything...and ended up prepared for nothing!  Oh, we had lots of BBQ sauce that we had to eat to survive...nothing to put it on to BBQ but beans!  The bonnets and mint juleps are long gone, the calico is history, but lives have been saved and friends have been rescued.  One from a ledge, some from Indians, one from a snake bite, all of our lives from a broken compass and being lost but headed back on the right track, an attacking cactus, and the memories go on.  We have been through snow, ice, desert heat, mountains, rivers, and we have survived.  The women of our wagon train are proven survivors.  They have handled every emergency like the professional pioneers they are.  The men on our wagon train have shown us what men have known throughout history...behind every good man there is a woman!  And in this case, many women! 

We don't know what we will find in Oregon as we prepare to leave Idaho, we don't know where we will settle, but we do know that we will be together as we've been on this trip.  We began as close friends who have become family.  As Danny leads us into the final sunset of our journey from Idaho toward our new home, we will never forget the hardships and struggles and courage it has taken to get us here.  (and if we had used that map, we'd have been there already!)

Danny

all's well that ends well, THE END – not quite

ROTFLMAO!!!DANNY...YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!  DON'T MAKE ME COME UP THERE....GRRRRRRRR....You are kidding right?  Lordy, I think  you are trying to push me right on over the edge of insanity into down right crazy!!!  (Jo's post)

 Danny…

Since it was night fall I called all the guys together to discuss our options, we had to make Oregon in two days especially since we were bout out of food. We decided to ride day and night until we make Oregon and that everyone would drive for 8 hours each.

After the meeting we all gathered around the cook fire and ate BBQ'd beef with all the fixin's. We all danced a Ho down and enjoyed ourselves talking about the good and bad times on the trail.

The next morning at sunrise we were off to the coast, we rode for 2 days and then in the distance we saw the ocean and knew we had made it. Since we were all friends we decided to set up our own town and call it Dannyville since I did such a fine job finishing the trip.  HA!

THE END

Completed Feb. 27th 2005