Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Billings Diary, Day 62

Hi All,
  I'm supposed to write my obituary for a memoir writing class, but I want to post more wildflower pictures. 

The ol' bear and I visited the Little Big Horn Battlefield. 

Although I've had many chances to do this before on trips from Montana to Minnesota or North Dakota, I've never stopped.  We agreed that it was much more engaging than we thought it would be.  The history is fascinating for one.  First we attended a recitation of the battle which confused me as three different armies converged on the largest group of Indians ever gathered (the historians believe) and then Custer broke off from one army and ended up dividing his group into three and blah blah blah until I didn't know who was where and what was up.  To make things worse, the "professor" (apparently he is a professor in his winter job) confused shouting with emotion and kept making me flinch when he would yell out a paragraph or two.

We then went on the two walks that meander to places where things happened in the battle, and stopped at every roadside point with a tablet until now I actually do have an idea of what happened.  

This marker had braided grass left in front of it.
 Of course, there are still things being argued about, which makes it even more interesting.

There were plenty of meadowlarks along the way.  A meadowlark song makes anything the best, and along with that, the wildflowers were stunning.  So stunning that I went right into the museum store and bought a book in which I could find only two of the specimens we saw.  I think the book is more for the Dakotas and if so, you can have it when you come here. 
So - on to the wildflowers (and the grasses - they were also fascinating):  I am sure most of these are fairly common, and I am going to get a book out of the library (and buy one too) but I haven't yet so I don't know what they are.  Sorry they are so big, but I wanted to keep the detail so I didn't resize or crop too much.

I know what these last two are: the top one is Yucca (I've posted some pictures of it before I knew it grew this impressive spike which I'm dying  to see when it's in full bloom) and next is prickly pear with some buds on it - also can't wait to see in bloom.
Yucca - with flower stalk.  Also know as soapweed because the roots were used for soap according to this book.

Prickly Pear with buds on it.
 Did I say I've never lived anywhere before where cacti grew?  I am fascinated by it.

I've posted this by uploading the pictures, and while waiting, ironing clothes for work.  I have a penchant for linen, which is eternally wrinkly, but also have a penchant for ironing, thank goodness.  This all goes quite well with my penchant for drying clothes on the line.  If I didn't hang clothes out to dry, I would have missed the pair of goldfinches playing tag amongst the trees this afternoon.  They were making clicking-type noises that I have heard before.  Now I know that those are goldfinch noises and will look for them next time I hear it.
Adios, all.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

I thought you were done with classes? Is this a separate one you are doing for 'fun'?