Sunday, October 5, 2008

Indian Taco – and I’m not talking curry baby

Probably a great place to stay when all you have left from your gambling winnings is a few bucks and lots of t-shirts and leather goods.
I headed on out to Cherokee, the Reservation and home to souvenir shops, gambling and colorful bears. I picked up a warm jacket (which I wore every night the rest of the trip), some cool sterling and stone earrings, a sticker for my computer (Life is Good), a Cherokee cookbook (of course)and other kinds of trinkets and treasures. I also took a few pictures of bears.

There is always a touch of beauty everywhere.

The bears are painted with different native motifs showcasing the philosophy and endeavors of these people. Like the signs throughout the town, the descriptions are listed in English, as well as the native alphabet. I wanted to see them all, but since they were spread out we only drove past most of them, not enough to save for posterity. No biggie.

I am not sure about the name of this bear, but it gives an idea of the intricate detailing these native artists put into the renditions of their scopes. The bear is a totem creature, powerful and wise and the perfect host to the inspirations of these people.

The main event of the day for me was trying the local food, specifically Cherokee-inspired treats. We went to a place called Paul’s diner and I had what is known locally as an Indian Taco – fry bread smothered in beany chili, lettuce, tomato and onions. Topped of course with the accoutrements of salsa and sour cream. It was an OK meal, but nothing really to write about – I pretty much already said it all.

This is the "Harmony of Life" bear. He was the only one I came face-to-face with. Such beautiful colors and they shone so nicely under the sun. I love when cities do this kind of public art. New York had cows, Safety Harbor had manatees and now bears. Do you have any cool public art in your town??

Satiated for the rest of the day we headed back to the home-away-from-home for a nap and hot tubbing. But this was not before I took us on an excursion that had me in tears. I took the long way home, first missing the misleading signs of the GPS bitch and going in a circle when I knew full well there was a better way to get back to the cabin.

Bears and bees - while we vacationed, this fella kept up working and could have been the reason I dreamed about going back to work so soon, still makes me sad now thinking of it.

Then I missed my street and we ended up at a dead-end on top of the mountain. I was scared and cried incredibly with the fear of being lost.

One of the many shops to get your fill of spending money. We visited several and found only a few actually had goods crafted by the locals, most of the Cherokee stuff was made in China. This really disappointed me.

It was an odd night, but I made it through – though a dream made me think I was at home and had to go to work on Monday and that really aggravated me.

(Note: Recalling these days is making me a bit heart sick for NC. As I sit at my kitchen table, I find it hard to live in the moment and enjoy the day at hand, instead I feel a bit empty in my memories of just a week ago. Maybe I have found a new part of me, a more sensitive part that needs something more. But I guess that is another story.)

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