Remembering…

Kennedy Meadows is inextricably part of my backstory too. The Professor, my friends, and I have spent many hours riding our horses through the beautiful place on our way to the Emigrant Wilderness. We’ve eaten at the restaurant, spent time in the bar, and my favorite – hung out after dark by the corrals just to watch the stock. The resort hotel and store burned to the ground in 2007. Our tiny community was stunned. They came together from near and far to help rebuild. Photo courtesy froess.org.

What color were the curtains in the dining room at Kennedy Meadows? I wish I could remember. Do you? In my mind they were red and white – but I couldn’t swear to it. And what did I eat the last time I ate there? I think it was a hamburger – but I wouldn’t swear to that either. That bugs me. Alot.

Because the Kennedy Meadows hotel, dining room, and store are now gone – incinerated in a fire last Sunday night – I find myself rewinding a mental tape of things I loved about the place and that I am certain I will forget over time… some of which I already have. So for posterity, here’s what I remember… and that I hope I will never forget.

I remember the noise my boots and spurs made clumping up the steps onto the porch. Ching, ching, ching.

I remember the warm glow of the dining room, rowdy back and forth banter, and raucus laughter as we dwelt on a perfect day together in the Emigrant.

I remember how loud the generator was out behind the kitchen and how cold it was in the bathrooms on a frosty night. I remember waiting my turn, freezing to death, and throwing about 25 million sticks for that silly dog.

I remember brilliant stars twinkling above the canyon walls and through the trees ringing the meadow.

I remember dimly but surely, my best friend Anne and I trailing our husbands to a hoofbeat cadence as we headed back down the trail to Kennedy Meadows. We were covered in dust and mosquito bites, alternately singing and talking about babies (and husbands), our very good fortune, and the cold drink and dinner ahead.

How do make sure I remember all these things that I need to remember?

And how do I make sure I remember those things that I’ve already forgotten?

Maybe you can help.

Tell me the things that you loved about Kennedy Meadows. Please share with all of us. So together we can remember not to forget.

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I like going places: out West, west of the West, and all the way around the back of the globe to the East. I like to go by train, plane, automobile, horseback. Whatever. And I like writing about what I see, feel, hear, smell, and touch all along the way and once I get there.

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