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Old 08-08-2011, 01:06 PM   #21
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Melissa,

If you take 18 again through Rosebud Rez and Pine Ridge Rez, do it in the daylight for your own safety. I say that because even the people who run the organization where we stay when we volunteer out there do not like to be out after dark. There is too much alcohol and drunk driving. SD puts up little signs where people are killed on the roadside. These little signs get much more frequent the closer you get to Pine Ridge.

Get your gas at Big Bats (although even there, you will be uncomfortable, because on your way to the bathroom, you get stared at. Big Bats is a Shell station that is the local hangout, not alcoholic, but just for mainly old guys shooting the breeze). Get groceries at Sioux Nation in Pine Ridge. It is just about the only grocery store on the Rez and kind of fascinating, to be honest. It looks like a pretty ordinary grocery until you start looking around, and you see the culture, including modern-day culture. The Pine Ridge Thorps are perennial powerhouses at basketball, so we often buy sweatshirts or jackets as you see in my picture where I am eating Aunt Betty's cake.

Get your local school or religious organization to send high schoolers out there (Volunteer Organization on Pine Ridge Reservation | RE-MEMBER). Or go yourself. Kevin and I went the first time on our way to Yellowstone with our Burro. In fact, we got the Burro, because as the time came for our trip, I became uncomfortable with lack of information on sleeping arrangements at the organization where we stay. Turned out just fine, but their website at the time was a little lacking. The organization that we go through is called Re-Member, as in the opposite of dismember, or what happened as a result of Wounded Knee I and II. They build beds, renovate houses, dig outhouses and anything else they can do for the Lakota. Volunteering out there is incredibly rewarding. I guarantee, with every screw I drive when I am out there, I know that I have changed someone's life. As we are talking, I am having Rez envy. Every spring during spring break, we fill our UHaul with local donations, load my university students in the van, and go there to volunteer. We can then sleep in our Uhaul, not with the college kids.

Pine Ridge does have one or two fast food places. It is a dry reservation though, so no beer to go with the pizza. Unfortunately, all too close is White Clay, Nebraska, where Lakota can walk to buy beer. White Clay is almost entirely made up of 3 bars owned by whites who have gotten rich by selling beer to the Lakota. Four million cans a year. Don't drive your girls through there; I take my students, so they better understand, but your girls don't need to see yet.

Oh, and the Lakota will not look at you in the face. That is considered rude. Their handshake is 2 fingers. Any other kind is considered rude. That kind of handshake can come off as less than polite, but that is their culture.

Well, enough of my going on and on. This country has not done well by their indigenous populations, and unfortunately, they continue to blow it. They will drop by the Rez, make a speech, drop some money, and then leave. I don't know the solution, but it can't be a one-shot deal and has to be done with the tribes, not to the tribes.

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Old 08-08-2011, 04:31 PM   #22
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Kevin and I have talked about a fiberglass rally featuring Indian tacos for the main meal. We have looked at deep fat fryers, and I scouted out recipes for low carb versions of frybread. And wasabi for dessert. It is on our radar. I just have to get tenure first. Working on papers.

If you get the chance, try the Lakota recipe for wasabi (like a blueberry pudding) as dessert for your Indian tacos. My Lakota friends say that it is supposed to go over the frybread, but I have made it here at home over ricotta cheese. Mmmm.


CindyL
Wasabi is a spicy condiment made from the grated root of the plant and used like mustard. I think you mean "Wozapi" which is a fruit dessert. We have eaten it made with chokecherries and dipped in fry bread and it is the best ever! I have the recipe in an Indian cookbook compiled by United Tribes in Bismarck ND.
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:42 PM   #23
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In 2008 we ended up in Interior, SD down a dirtroad in a little campground just outside Interior after getting blocked by an early snow storm in Rapid City. Next time we'll check out the Woodenknife, thanks for the tip.

Norm
Woodenknife Cafe has been closed for years as the website states, but I think they still market their frybread mix in the grocery stores. It is excellent.
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:49 PM   #24
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so it has, here is another link
Navajo Fry Bread, Indian Fry Bread, Indian Fry Bread Recipe, Indian Taco, Navajo Fry Bread History and Recipe, Indian Tacos History and Recipe, Bread Recipes
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:58 PM   #25
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CindyL, your program sounds terrific and you have some lucky students.

I've been to a couple of the poorest spots in the western hemisphere, neighborhoods in Haiti and Nicaragua, and it's pretty tragic to be able to say that our native american reservations give those places a run for their money in terms of misery.

And while there is nothing ennobling about crushing poverty, it's useful to be smart instead of fearful, and open to talking and meeting people. Not every random person is trying to hurt us. <---this is something I had the hardest time convincing people about when I walked by myself across pennsylvania. There were people who chased me down the road with muffins and glasses of iced tea and apples for my horse, yet were absolutely certain something terrible was going to happen to me. Lesson: there are more generous people out there than malicious ones.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:57 PM   #26
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Vivian

You are certainly right. I never get that right. I always have to ask Kevin, and since he was working, and I could not ask him, I blew it.

Here is a recipe for Wojapi, but this is not the one I used: American Indian Health - Recipes . I used this one, but I subbed in a low carb alternative to cornstarch and then put it over ricotta cheese.

I am feeling an Indian taco/wojapi meal coming to Oak Park in the near future.

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Old 08-09-2011, 07:09 AM   #27
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My wife and I have just completed a driving trip between San Antonio, TX. and Prescott, AZ. We like doing the route staying off of freeways, and manage to only have to drive about 24 miles od freeway the whole trip. One thing that we have noticed is everytime we drive this route, and we do often to visit my 93 year young mother-in law, is we see more places to camp. Some are commercial camp grounds, some are BLM, State Parks, etc. We now know of a place that we could camp along the route about every 200-300 miles. When just driving, as we do now, we make the whole 1,100 miles in two days. When we get a camper, we expect to make the same trip in 3-4 days and enjoy some very pretty places to camp.

Using $700 for gas for a 2,300 mile trip doesn't sound all that bad, When towing a trailer, as you averaged $3.29 for a gallon of gas. Not bad

Anyway it sounds like you had a great trip, and you all will remember the trip. thanks for sharing
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Old 08-09-2011, 09:13 AM   #28
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Wow, those recipes sound yummy! Maybe they could be a dish at a Rally sometime.

Very interesting but sad History behind the reservations. They dont teach this stuff in school any more. Maybe if they did more folks would know about the situation and could help.
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Old 08-09-2011, 11:03 AM   #29
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Melissa,

I don't think they ever did teach about reservations. How many of us really know about this level of poverty and misery in this country? You hear about Haiti and Africa, but how many of us have heard about people in our own backyard who put their children to bed hungry two weeks of the month when they have no money and government cheese has run out? Indigenous peoples in school are the cute little ones you see at Thanksgiving and the ones you see shaking Columbus' hand on Columbus Day. Schools (and I speak as a faculty member who trains teachers) are only now beginning to downplay Columbus, because the same hand he shook when he first got here, he enslaved the following year. They don't necessarily teach that information to the little ones, but they are backing off holding Columbus up as a shining star. Some are starting to teach Thanksgiving truthfully too, but I haven't heard of any teaching that the same Puritans who ate with Massasoit's people, cut off the head of his son and put it on a pike for 20 years.

Sorry, I am done now. I won't post further on this. This forum is not for this. It is just that 5 years of going out there and seeing the results turns you into an advocate (and, in the case of Kevin and me, owners of our first fiberglassrv camper )

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Old 08-09-2011, 03:32 PM   #30
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We also got back from a 6000 mile vaca.
Yellowstone, Bad Lands, Black Hills are a wonder to see and well worth the trip.

Deadwood: Looked like there was slot machines in the front windows of most of the places on main street.

South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, Kansas: we both can say, we never saw so much of nothing in our life. Nothing as far as the eye can see. No wonder you can buy so many acres in Wyoming for little to nothing compared to land in the East. Sure would hate to drive home from town only to be reminded that I forgot the milk.
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Old 08-10-2011, 02:33 PM   #31
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We also got back from a 6000 mile vaca.
Yellowstone, Bad Lands, Black Hills are a wonder to see and well worth the trip.

Deadwood: Looked like there was slot machines in the front windows of most of the places on main street.

South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, Kansas: we both can say, we never saw so much of nothing in our life. Nothing as far as the eye can see. No wonder you can buy so many acres in Wyoming for little to nothing compared to land in the East. Sure would hate to drive home from town only to be reminded that I forgot the milk.
Hehe I was kind of thinking the same as I went through Idaho, Wyoming and Montrana a few weeks back.

Nothing like a road trip to open your eyes up as to the reality of life outside our own area. What hit me hard was passing through so many small towns that were totally boarded up and every property for miles on either side was up for sale.....
Or larger towns where it was clear that things were not good - lots of bad roads, parks needing care, closed shops and again for sale signs everwhere. I read a lot of news so I know before I went that things were tough South of me but I had no idea how tough until I saw it first hand..
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:52 PM   #32
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Speeking of closed shops: What happened to Stuckies? Use to be everywhere now abanded.
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