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Posted 7/06/11 (Wed)


Another Fourth of July celebration come and gone. And boy, you talk about a Goldilocks weekend. Not too hot. Not too cold. I hate it when the weatherman says that, but, then, I pretty much hate most weather men.
A number of years ago, we had an exchange student spend a year with us. His name was Christian Vold, from Norway. A bright, intelligent young man who is now a doctor in Norway. I take credit for starting him down the right road as a teenager.
Christian was invited to speak at a local Lions Club. One of the supposedly adults was trying to impress his compatriots as to his own intelligence. So, he asked this high school student, “Do the people in Norway like socialized medicine?”
Christian thought a minute and replied (think Norwegian accent), “The sick people do.”
The next question was, “Do you have the Fourth of July in Norway?”
(Again think Norwegian accent) “Yes we do, vut ve do not celebrate it!”
Smart lad!
Way smarter than I was at that age. Or, as Shirley will point out, am now. When I was that age, Hal and I were entered in the amateur bronc riding at the Killdeer Mountain Roundup Rodeo. Now, forty years ago, and I guess today, it is a celebration. It was not just a three hour rodeo. It was a three day, and maybe three night, party. You saw neighbors for the only time of the year. You could share a drink with many a good friend, dance on the street, eat an early breakfast, ride a bucking horse and start all over. We were tougher then. Or as Shirley will point out, dumber.
Anyway, we had a problem. This was way before synchronized heifers and a calving season measured in days or weeks. This was start calving heifers the first of April and calve till they were done.
We were down to one heifer left. Grandpa Herb was heading for Berthold for the big Fourth celebration. Hal and I were left to do a few chores and watch that last heifer. Grandpa’s dust was still hanging in the still air on the morning of July third when Hal and I did the chores. We turned the saddle horses in the pasture and put out a bag of dog food. The crippled calf got a week’s feed and all the water tanks were given a good checking.
There remained one problem. The heifer. That was the genius of the plot. I hooked on the horse trailer and Hal brought the heifer. We loaded a half dozen bales of hay, a water bucket and tub, a couple ropes, and the calf puller. That, along with our bronc saddles pretty much filled the pickup box.
We pulled into Killdeer early that morning and found a nice parking spot for the trailer right behind the Bucking Horse Bar. In the shade! Cause that heifer was going to be there for a couple days!
Heck, it worked out good. I can guarantee that the heifer got checked way more than she ever would of at home. I don’t think she got a lot of sleep and she was a little too nervous to have a calf, but no harm was done.
I set an arena record in the bronc riding. 28. That’s right! Twenty-eight! The lowest score ever scored in the bronc riding at the Killdeer Mountain Roundup Rodeo!
I guess the record still stands today. Wish I had pictures!
Gotta run! See you at the rodeo!