Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Tamkaliks - Wallowa, Oregon

Ms. Wynans - Office Manager & Coquette
The Wallowa Band of the Nez Perce celebration began Friday evening, but I'd driven back from Halfway and was tired.

Saturday was bright and hot...a fine day, but a potter told of how she'd lost much of her ware Friday afternoon when a tornado blew. Several other folks had sustained damage and one artist who had two booths had given up and left.

I was moved by the Grand Entrance which included many of the dancers and attendees. The coming-of-age ceremony for a young man who'd gotten his first salmon was almost unbearable as he was given center-stage and tasked with telling the story of his catch. He paused so long there were a couple of encouraging whoops. Eventually he made it through and his accomplishment (bravery at that moment) was recognized by a round of generous applause.

Around 3:00 pm after enjoying a bowl of the best menudo I've ever had, I decided it was too hot and, boarding my trusty R.V., headed west.

Somewhere around 75 miles later I realized I'd forgotten my mail. I was on a back highway with practically no traffic, MY kind of road, and figured it could wait another day. And as luck would have it I found a beautiful copse next to the Grand Ronde River for camp. I spent Sunday driving back and was glad to find the spot in Lostine Canyon (more photos on Flickr -- here) available.

All the driving took it's toll. When Monday morning dawned I was reminded of what it felt like to HAVE to get up.

By noon I'd managed to get bathed (a MAJOR accomplishment), packed and into town. After getting the mail and some groceries I stopped in to visit with Ms. Wynans, Office Manager for the Wallowa Band Nez Perce Interpretive Center. We'd had a fun visit several days before in which she told about supervising the pow-wow and I wanted to congratulate her on a fine event. We chatted about her new fan (see image); she'd given a demo of one during my previous visit and someone (not me), apparently having heard of her proclivity, had, over the weekend, left her a new one.

It's a pretty area with interesting people. I look forward to visiting again.


12/24/15 - I'm getting the Solstice cards out and couldn't find Ms. Wynans' address. I went online to look up The Interpretive Center's and discovered her obituary. I wish you could have met her; she was amazing! 

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