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A Small Town Country Boy Trying To Survive In Todays World

Sunday, January 25, 2009

My Native Friends

My town is located next to an Indian reservation called The Confederated Tribes Of Warm Springs. It is actually three different tribes, (Hence the confederated). We have the Wasco, Paiute, and Warm Springs tribes located there.

So this will be about some of my native friends and some experiences I have had with them.

First let me try and describe the three different tribes.

The Paiute Indian is the biggest of the three, most of the men are 6 foot or taller and the women are a little shorter. They are big people with flat features and tend to be the hardest to make friends with.

Then there are the Wasco Indians who are of average height but are very stocky and are plain of features. They are by far the meanest of the three tribes, more trouble makers and they love to fight. But if you do make a friend with one you will have a friend for life.

And last is the Warm Springs Indian who also are of average size but are the most elegant of the three. They are one of the better looking tribes in the US. They are by far the easiest going of the three tribes, they just love to joke and laugh, so this makes them the easiest to get to know.

Now don't get me wrong here I have friends from all three tribes so I am trying to give a honest opinion here.

Indians are some of the most spiritualistic people there ever was. Everything is for a reason and everything that happened around them was for a purpose or was a sign of good or bad to come.

They are also very superstitious, For example if a family member dies they can not go and gather berries or fruit or hunt for one year.

They have stories about every animal that was around. For example the Coyote is a messenger. It is good if he is heading towards you he has no message, if he is headed away from you unless he stops and looks back at you, then it is bad news.

A lot of what has been portrayed in movies about them is not true but there was some that were very close to the truth. The movie Dances With Wolves did a very good job explaining how they were and how they lived. Even today a lot of them tend to be free spirited people. But like all races it only take a few bad apples to spoil it for the rest.

Ok now to some of my friends and adventures about living next to the rez. (that's what we call it)

Lets start with Mike, I call him Chief. Mike is not from Warm Springs his tribe is in Washington, so they did not live on the rez but in town.

Mike and I got to know each other in school doing sports and it is a small town where we raised a little hell now and again. Mike is easy going and it takes a lot to make him mad, but then he gets over it real fast. He loves to joke around and one of his favorite sayings is Honest Injun. Now imagine that coming out of a 6 foot tall 200 pound Indian man.

Tim and I also met in high school thru sports but did not really get to know each other until we had graduated. He was a Warm Springs Indian, so was very easy going always looking for a good time. I spent the most time on the rez. with him and his family.

There are wild horses on the rez. and one of their favorite pastimes then was chasing them. Well there was a bad disease with no cure so all the wild horses needed to be caught and tested and being the free spirit I was at the time I was more than happy to help. I'll stop there as this is a long story so I will post more about it later.

Then there was Bill he was a Wasco Indian and loved to fight and raise hell. He was older than me and I got acquainted with him thru my brother as they were good friends.

Bill always called me little brother and treated me like it. One time Tim talked me into going into one of the local bars that was best know as the Indian bar. So in we went there was only two non natives in the bar, myself and the bar tender who walked up to me and asked if I was crazy. At the time I was wondering that myself.

Well to make a long story short I was spotted and the trouble was starting but here came Bill to the rescue. He walked over and asked me how I was doing (don't remember my reply) and then turned around and asked if anyone had a problem with his little brother having a beer with them. Whew all I can say was after that I never did have any problems with any natives again.

One of our dearest friends is Danielle she is also a Warm Springs Indian very beautiful and loves to have a good time. I knew her in school but we did not get very close until the last couple of years. She is in contact with us almost every day. She stops by at least once a week. Even has her boys call us their uncle and aunt. She will literally give you her last dollar and not expect it back. She is probably my wife's nearest dearest friend and we just love her to death.

So these are a few of my native friends. I will write about some of our exploits later. I don't want to bore you too long because...

It is what it is

And I want you to come back!



Lydia said...

Good morning Rod,

Nice story, This area has quite a few native tribes also. When I walk in the park(as seldom as that might be) I usually meet up with a wonderful older Indian man. He has the best stories to tell!

Have a great day!

Rods Wanderings said...

Hi Lydia
Yes the older they are the better the stories.
Thanks for stopping by!


Cygnus MacLlyr said...

I look forward to hearing more of this storied aspect of your life, Rod...
Tell us about the roundup of the horses needing testing for the disease... Please!

Rods Wanderings said...

Ok I will write about it tomorrow and post it Wednesday!
I know it sometimes sounds like alot of BS but it is all true.
I guess it is all part of growing up in a small town.
Thanks for stopping by Cygnus and don't ever give up on you dream!
You have it started just follow thru and plese keep us posted