"BUS!" Priscilla called from the store. "Oh, crap a crayon!" I said to myself. I was in my office trying to meet a writing deadline for our website and it was not going well. Steve was away supporting Kira at the Region cross-country meet, so we were slightly understaffed. By my tone, one might guess that bus tours are not an experience I cherish. I do not hate buses, I simply disapprove of their tactics. Tour companies confine those poor people for hours and, unless it is an emergency, prohibit the use of on-board facilities. The bus companies have decided it is best to find an agreeable facility every 200 miles or so and turn those suffering souls loose for fifteen minutes, period; schedules must be met. In this time frame the travelers are supposed to find a bathroom, dehydrate, rehydrate, shop and reload. It puts them in a bad mood. For the tourists, and for us, this does not allow for the most satisfactory shopping experience.
So, when I heard Priscilla call out her warning, I figured we were in for a mad rush of toilet seeking torpedoes in a foul frame of mind. Happily, I was mistaken. Upon being set free, the group strolled about the parking lot taking pictures. They then meandered through the cafe, gift shop and trading post at a casual pace. The travelers were a mixed group of English and American nationals willing to make conversation and share their experiences. One middle-aged woman even showed me special attention, walking right up and talking as if we had known each other all our lives. When other people would interrupt with questions or comments, she wandered off and returned as soon as I was free. It was not long before the bus started its diesel engine, which is a sure sign departure is imminent. My new lady friend said good-bye and headed for the door, but stopped at the threshold as if contemplating. She then turned on her heel and came back. Walking right up to me once again, she said, "You look and sound exactly like my brother, it is absolutely uncanny." I laughed and said, "He must be a handsome devil." "Yeah . . . nnno, but I love him dearly." We had a good chuckle, then she gave me a hug, walked out the door, climbed back on the bus and departed for somewhere in middle America.
It must have been my month for look-a-likes, because a couple from Arkansas came into the trading post and told me I look just like their Baptist minister back home. "Don't get me started on religion," I warned, "I can deliver a sermon with the best of them." Luckily they chose not to call my bluff. Another couple told me I looked just like their neighbor. I guess he still owed them $500 from a short term loan proffered several years ago. Even I know you do not borrow money from family, neighbors or friends if you want to maintain good relations. Lastly, while attending a volleyball game in Richfield, Laurie, Alyssa, McKale and I were having breakfast in a local restaurant when a man came in, sat across from us and proceeded to stare in our direction. As we left the cafe, he followed us out, stopped us and said that I look just like his boss. The man was from Price, Utah, as was his boss. He assured us I had a twin. Either I was cast from a rather generic mold, or four of us were separated at birth. My dear, sweet mother swears this is not the case, but I wonder.
Navajo Large Handmade Yei Vase - Nancy Chilly (#25)
As it happened, the people from the bus spent a good 30 minutes with us and turned out to be a delightful group. I may have to update my opinion of tour directors, bus drivers and the like. Because we were given a little extra time we were able to send a very nice turquoise bracelet home with one man, a present for his daughter. A woman took a piece of Nancy Chilly pottery with her. Priscilla and I had the opportunity to meet and greet a bus load of extremely nice people. I also met a sweet sister I was altogether unfamiliar with, and learned of a pseudo brother. Laurie pointed out that in each and every case of mistaken identity I did not, not once, get the name and address of my "strikingly similar siblings." She claims that it is because I am afraid to face myself! I do not know where she comes up with all this psycho babble, but I am sincerely troubled by it.
With warm regards,
Barry, Steve and The Team
Great New Items! This week's selection of Native American art!
Our TnT's purchased new treasures! Check out Traders in Training!
Enjoy artwork from our many collector friends in Living with the Art!