So Long It’s Been Good To Know Ya

So Long, Chief Mountain Territory
I Can’t Believe Your Song Is Gone So Soon
I Barely Learned The Tune
So Soon
So Soon

Chief Mountain Service
July 19

I got back late. I put my gear in the bunkhouse and then went over to Mike’s café and ate a hamburger and fries. That was a tasty treat
after spending a week in the mountains. Mike, the longhaired, six-gun toting gunslinger from Chicago, invited me up to his living quarters above the café for a cold beer. I sat down with him and his wife and had a farewell chat. I never knew until then how paranoid my next-door neighbors were. Actually, I was probably better off not knowing. It wasn’t hard to say good-bye.

Saying good-bye to the Power’s family wasn’t so easy. “Rugged” was the best word I could come up with to describe Tom. Before Montana, he had lived in Sheridan, Wyoming, a city on the edge of the Big Horn Mountains. He said, “The place just got too civilized for me, I had to leave.” Why he left Sheridan wasn’t surprising to me. But what he was about to say, over the breakfast table, was.

We were having our last meal together, so basically that was the time for our “good-byes.” Tom was in a pretty good mood when he asked me if I had enjoyed my stay in the mountains. I actually stayed longer than he expected me to. I told him “Yes, I was glad to be back, though.” Then he asked me if I got lonely up there. “Not really,” I replied, “After I got used to being alone, I enjoyed it.” Then Tom said, “Before I bought this place, I owned a cattle ranch and herded the cattle up under Chief Mountain. “Sometimes I would stay up there for a week at a time. It almost killed me. I couldn’t take the loneliness. It got so bad; I had to sell the ranch. That’s when I bought this place.”

I didn’t know what to say. Nobody contradicted Tom. Fortunately, I
didn’t have to respond. Everybody just kept eating breakfast as Tom stared at Chief Mountain out the window. After I had almost finished my eggs, he looked over at me and said, “But you know, when I die I want to be buried right up along side that mountain. I would like nothing better than that. She’s one hell of a mountain.” Iva handed me the eggs. I took a second helping. I guess what’s inside a man is mystery, sometimes even to the man himself.

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About bwinwnbwi

About me: Marvin Gaye’s song, "What’s Going On" was playing on the jukebox when I went up to the counter and bought another cup of coffee. When I got back, the painting on the wall next to where I was sitting jumped out at me, the same way it had done many times before. On it was written a diatribe on creativity. It was the quote at the bottom, though, that brought me back to this seat time after time. The quote had to do with infinity; it went something like this: Think of yourself as being in that place where infinity comes together in a point; where the infinite past and the infinite future meet, where you are at right now. The quote was attributed to Hermann Hesse, but I didn’t remember reading it in any of the books that I had read by him, so I went out and bought Hesse’s last novel, Magister Ludi. I haven’t found the quote yet, but I haven't tired of looking for it either.
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4 Responses to So Long It’s Been Good To Know Ya

  1. Mèo Lười Việt says:

    Then he asked me if I got lonely up there. “Not really,” I replied, “After I got used to being alone, I enjoyed it.” Then Tom said, “Before I bought this place, I owned a cattle ranch and herded the cattle up under Chief Mountain. “Sometimes I would stay up there for a week at a time. It almost killed me. I couldn’t take the loneliness. It got so bad; I had to sell the ranch. That’s when I bought this place.”

    I guess what’s inside a man is mystery, sometimes even to the man himself.
    :)

  2. eof737 says:

    I wonder how your feet are holding up on your journey… Is this metaphorical or real I wonder? The descriptions of the area are beautiful so all must be moving along well. Keep on trucking. :-)
    Eliz

  3. bwinwnbwi says:

    Trucking I will. How did you know? This is pretty much a real journey. Thanks for the comment.

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