Friday, December 14, 2007

remembering "Buffalo Bob", Buster Crabbe, and a Grand Canyon Mule Ride

Going up into the attic to retrieve holiday decorations you never quite know what you will find if you take the time to stop and explore old boxes.


These first two pictures bewitched me back 36 years to college days and two days I spent accompanying two of my child hood idols. Two men I grew up watching on TV and movies who taught me to believe in magic and years later in real life were even more fascinating to meet and know.


And then … 31 years back to the unforgettable day long Grand Canyon Mule Ride down the Bright Angel Trail to unimaginable sights and views and back up again. And of all the roller coasters and thrill rides I have ridden, nothing can equal that day.


They warn you that riders should not be afraid of heights or large animals. What an understatement! When your mule decides to lean over the edge of a cliff to graze on some tasty branch protruding from the cliff wall you are left facing down a 1000+ ft cliff on the back of an insane grazing gourmet mule.  … Oh, but it gets better …


Your guide will tell you “don’t let it do that! Hit it on the head!” … WHAT? I am on the back of a possibly suicidal mule who is hanging over a cliff and you want me to hit it on the head? … RIGHT! … I tried “mule whispering” to no effect. First finishing my Act of Contrition, then I smacked the beast on the head. The mule shook its head, backed up off the edge and continued on the trail.


Stubborn as a mule is NOT a cliché. We would repeat this process several times. <grin>


What does this have to do with caregiving, I guess nothing. Just some time spent to stop and enjoy an old box in the attic.


Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer


  1. ................a moment of respite!  Memories are precious!  Good medicine for caregivers!

  2. (((((((((((((((HUGSTOYOU))))))))))))))Nothing like good ole memories to cherish for a life time.Thanks for shairng your memories with me.Have a good weekend.

  3. Great memories and wonderful pictures!

    BTW, you've not changed at all in 31 years!! <grin>


  4. a trip down memory lane:) thank you for sharing


  5. I have never been in as precarious a position as that, Patrick... I would have been too terrified to stay on the animal. Our attic is filled with the older memories as well, but I'll have to say, you have experienced some heights that I have not. Sometimes when I go looking for something in the attic, I get distracted by the old things we have put up there, that have not been seen for years. I dread the day we have to go through them... I mean, if we don't, our son will be left with them, and he has no place to keep the stuff. Most of it is worthy of the landfill... some of it he may want to keep, but it would be difficult to leave the task to him alone. Unfair even. I wonder what other folks do with their stuff that has been hidden in the attics and basements for years? Do they decide to clear it out, get rid of it, give it away? or do they leave it, knowing they will die, and someone else will have to deal with it? I have no material things from my grandparents, and very little my parents gave me (by way of possessions), so there are no family heirlooms to pass on. Everyone I know keeps putting stuff away, but I don't know anyone who is clearing stuff out, unless they are building/buying a new house and want to start over fresh. I only know one family doing that. Have a good week! bea

  6.   I would have been scared to death going down that canyon even walking.  I have a major problem with heights.  We have been having some major memory moments here the last week.  Its good to look through old boxes and pictures.



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