And just like that, the Fourth of July is here! Maybe it’s the pandemic or all the political noise, but somehow this holiday snuck up on the Bench Sitters a bit too fast.
And the holiday may go down in a many peoples’ memories as the “Virus Fourth.”
This is the day we set aside to celebrate the country’s independence, honor those brave ancestors who risked everything as they sought freedom and the wise ones who wrote our Constitution.
Yet, most of the Bench Sitters wonder what those great leaders might say if they could see the United States of America today.
They might be proud it has lasted well over 240 years but sad to see what we’ve done with the environment.
They would have smiles of satisfaction to learn citizens still vote to see who will represent them in government but shed a tear to learn how money and special interests can control those votes.
They would feel joy to see their design of three equal and balancing powers of government still exist in the presidency, Congress and judicial system, but scorn the way that system is eroding.
They would no doubt nod approval to learn freedom of assembly and speech are intact but shudder to see how divided the country has become.
And that’s enough of a lecture for this week.
Last weekend’s rains were more than welcome. It was so dry one of the boys overheard Dave Belus comment that, “Even some hail would be welcome. At least it would melt and make something wet.”
We hear the virus problem has stimulated the sales of camper trailers, and judging by how many of those “tin houses” are parked in the Bighorns, this could be true.
It makes sense. This is a way people can enjoy the holiday and still remain “isolated” by parking at least 20 yards away from the next trailer.
Getting a haircut last week, Christie-the-barberette told Sven she has been seeing a lot of trailers with those “new stickers” headed up the mountain. She lives on Fort Street near the west end of town and has a good view of these things.
The mountain streams should be about right for dry fly fishermen and women this weekend. The cooler weather and rains have helped keep water flows about right.
And Lake DeSmet seems to draw more people every summer.
The Mikesell-Potts recreation area will be packed for sure. Ever since the County Road and Bridge department took over the operations there, things have continued to improve. They have developed a nice beach area in the bay area this past year.
The serious lake fishermen are telling us a few of those big lake trout are being caught at DeSmet. Not sure how this strain of trout arrived in DeSmet (may have washed down from high mountain lakes), but some well over 20 pounds have been hooked in the deeper parts of the lake.
Regardless of your plans this weekend, the Bench Sitters hope you have a wonderful holiday with family and friends.
Talk about the weather, talk about the fishing, about the hot dogs or the watermelon . . . but don’t talk about the virus or politics.
Instead, enjoy the day.