Gosh, I can't believe it took me until today to get caught up from the long Memorial Day weekend. Here it is Friday again and I'm just now getting around to making an entry.
Jim and I decided to make a run to South Dakota for the weekend. It's only about a 5 hour drive from where we live, so it seemed like a good idea. Neither of us has gotten away in such along time. This time it was just the two of us. No kids or relies to slow us down.
We didn't make any hotel reservations and thought we might be in trouble when we got to Hill City and the major hotels were all booked up. BUT, right next to the Super8 was this tiny Motel with only 6 units. Suprisingly, we were the first to rent a room that day. It turned out to be the cutest place with nice clean rooms and everything we needed, including a kitchenette. The lady who owns the Motel stays in Florida for the winter and they had just come back the previous Thursday to begin the season.
Once we got ourselves settled in, we headed off to Mt. Rushmore, about 10 miles down the road. We have been to South Dakota before, but I was once again amazed at the enormity of this monument and the work that went into creating it. It really is something to see and the postcards can't begin to convey how magnificent it is.
We went to see the Crazy Horse Memorial as well and It was ok, but the indoor Indian artifact and artwork display was more interesting than the actual monument. It's not finished and the only thing that is finished is the face. It was started in 1948 and this is all the further they've gotten with it. We won't see the finished product in our lifetime.
I wanted to share a picture of these beautiful beaded gloves they had on display. Unfortunately, there wasn't any commentary on them, so I don't know who, or which tribe might have made them. There are thousands of beads in this design.
The best part of the whole trip was our ride on the 1880 train that travels from Hill City to Keystone South Dakota through the Black Hills. By car, this is about a 50 mile trip, but on the train, it's only 10 miles. It's a two hour round trip. This train is an original 1880 steam train as are the passenger cars. I especially love the green stained glass windows in the enclosed cars, which are all original.
At the end of the line is the wonderful little town of Keystone and my favorite shopping district known as "The Boardwalk". I bought tons of little souvenirs and we ate at a really good buffet. Buffalo is served everywhere in South Dakota, so we enjoyed that several times while we were there.
On the way home, we encountered a couple of oddities. One being this sign for a grocery store in Lead South Dakota. I guess I don't have to tell you what's wrong with this picture!
Last, but not least, is this strange composition we found in Alliance Nebraska, known as "Car Henge". Here are a couple of our own photos, but if you want to know more, you can visit their website http://www.carhenge.com/