by Barbara Taylor & Homer S. Sewell III
- A small herd of buffalo in South Dakota*
Well, it is the end of summer, schools have started and we haven't slowed down to give you an update.
We left Jasper on Sunday, June 27 to drive the AbeMobile out to South Dakota. We arrived in the Black Hills at Rafter J Bar Ranch Campground on Tuesday afternoon, June 29. The trip was just over 1,500 miles. No problems with the RV except that it loves gas too much.
Homer did his first show at the campground on Thursday evening and continued to do three shows a week at one of the most beautiful campgrounds we have ever stayed at. I got a job at the J 9 Cafe in Hill City....about four miles from the campground and about 13 miles from Mount Rushmore. It was hard work, especially during Sturgis Bike Rally August 7 thru August 15 but with the help of my coworkers Carol, Lee, Liz, Leona, Jessica and Billy we managed to get everyone fed some good home-cooked meals every day. I met a lot of nice people from all over the world. We heard that there were approximately 400,000 people who attended the rally. Next year it is the 60th year for the rally and year 2000 so they expect to have more than 500,000 attend.
Homer continued to work on his new website (www.AbeUSA16.com) and finished his second book, The Life & Times of Abe Lincoln, for young children ages 4 through 12. He has someone in Alabama illustrating it for him and she has already done a beautiful job on all of the pictures for the book. He is anxious to get it off to some publishers to look at. All students in Pickens County are invited to join Homer's FREE club, ABE's Ambassadors Club on his website. If every student in the country would join and sign the 10-point pledge, we would have less problems in our schools and students would have more respect for parents and teachers.
On August 19 Homer was invited to speak to a group of 250 National Guard Recruiters from six northwest states who were gathered in Lead, South Dakota for a convention. They gave him a standing ovation after his 55 minutes talk. Before he began his talk he reminded those gathered that he (ABE) didn't have any interns in his White House. They all appreciated the humor.
We left South Dakota on Monday about noon and arrived back home at 5 AM, Wednesday, August 25. Our only problem on the trip was that we blew out a tire in Paducah, Kentucky and spent two hours waiting for our Good Sam Club to send someone to change it.
Sunday afternoon we invited my three girls and seven of my grandchildren and Homer's three children over for a spaghetti dinner. Homer took Jennifer, Melinda and the children on a long hike while Jason, Kimberly, Chip and I cleaned up the kitchen. It was good to see everyone again. We have been on the road so much we don't get to spend much time visiting with family and loved ones or to see Jasper. We are amazed at how much growth there is each time we come home.
We will be here for a couple more weeks and then we are off again until Christmas. We hope you and your family are doing well these days and the young folks are having a good time in school. Until next time....God Bless you and your loved ones....Barbara and Homer signing off.