Canyons of History

©2010 drkate

Born in 1915!

As you all know, I had the extreme pleasure of traveling to Arizona to celebrate my Mother’s 95th birthday during the latter part of May.  It was a journey for me as well as all my siblings, who with their spouses and children traveled from all corners of the United States to be there for her.  It was such a joyous time, and filled with many observations, that I find myself wanting to ‘slip this in’, in between the more serious chronicling underway on these pages.

Leaving the Rockies

Passing down through 11,000 feet on the west side of the Tetons, on a cool spring morning, I sigh as the air is still a brisk 40 degrees, and the leaves have not yet arrived on the trees.  Snow still covers the mountain tops…and I thank Creation for the ‘evergreens’.  A moose, sauntering across the road; osprey eagle fledglings poking their heads up from their nests, some still covered with the remnants of the last snow storm, and hawks circling overhead, lazing in the wind funnels sweeping up the mountain slopes, grace my journey.

I have two bumper stickers on my car–an American flag and the USA Revolution II sticker.  I am an intentional diver–I notice bumper stickers, cars, drivers, road signs, other traffic, police, small town talk.  I am respectful and greet people, ask questions if it seems right, always answer questions about my Tea Party shield pin.  Big smiles all around. 🙂

It is a long drive down through Idaho, Salt Lake City where the Mormon Temple is visible for miles, as are the uranium tailings piles right across the valley.  Then south, I cut away from the Las Vegas route well above Cedar City, entering the canyons of southern Utah.

Canyons and the Colorado River

…don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you’ve got till its gone…

The Boulder Canyon Project Act of 1928 authorized the major large scale damming of the Colorado River for the purposes of generating power, providing irrigation water, and for municipal supplies primarily in California.  Eventually eight major dams would be constructed, including Hoover and Glen Canyon, creating Lakes Mead and Powell.

In an instant, thousands of years of cultural history, and millions of years of geologic and paleontological information, were under water, to be revealed 70 years later in a record drought combined with poor water management.

The beauty of the canyon lands is indescribable…if you’ve ever been down in the canyon you know the small nooks, the springs and trees under the overhang, and welcome respite

Lake Powell 5/10

amidst the blistering sun reflecting off the canyon walls.  These places left, among the few, to be cherished and explored by those few who dare venture here.

Today no one knows what was covered, except perhaps the old Indian people who have vivid memories and even more timeless stories.  Somehow, the geologic age-dating tools I am familiar with, despite ‘proving’ the hundreds of millions of years of history, don’t quite seem to explain the magnitude of the loss.  Amidst such beauty.

The rapid construction of these dams on the Colorado, and the equally rapid development of the Snake, Columbia, and Missouri River dams, quickly covered our history before we even had a chance to understand it.  Sounds a lot like the rapid burial of the country in a flood of government before we even got to know our own self governance.

A Lifetime

Suddenly, she was 95, and the matriarch, the longest living of all the family to date.  Born during the Wilson era, and coming of age during the depression and FDR, she remembers her parents, staunch New Englanders, complaining about the democrats.

Yet she went to Mexico after graduating from college in 1935 and did not return to the United States until 1958, missing that key period of assault on the constitution, manipulation of education, the growth of the left and socialist party in America.

And suddenly I realize what a gift I have in my mother’s history, one result being that I was not  brainwashed as so many of my age group were…by their parents. What was covered up in many parents’ minds was our history, the sacred document known as the constitution and our responsibilities as citizens…like the man-made lakes covering the canyons.

We Belong to Each Other

Our shared history as Americans, ingrained over decades and for some, over two centuries, cannot be so quickly covered up, as we are now wary of the water lapping at the doorstep in the middle of the night.  It is hitting all of us in different ways, the water rising.

…a reminder to please put your oxygen mask on first before helping others…

17 Responses to “Canyons of History”

  1. 1 no-nonsense-nancy June 1, 2010 at 5:37 am

    Dr Kate, Congratulations again to your mother and a safe trip home to you. (you are probably home by now) Thank you for the beautiful little bit of history you gave us. I always think it is a shame when so much nature is destroyed for progress, even when some of it is necessary. In my home town in central PA they built a flood control dam in the 60s which covered up an entire valley, including my childhood swimming hole in the bend of the river which we simply called The Bend. My parents would take all 5 of us down there after a long hot day in the fields or garden with towels and a bar of soap and that was our bath! But the dam was necessary, as there had been terribly tragic floods on the Susquehanna River in Lock Haven and Johnstown.

    You travel so much and you see so much of our west, which I have seen very little. I am thankful for your beautiful pictures and your poetic way of describing everything. I do worry about you being in your car and traveling so much, though!

  2. 2 heather June 1, 2010 at 6:14 am

    DR Kate,

    What a beautiful story you have put into words for all here to read and the awesome pictures.

    So glad your trip to and from was safe.

    Thank you for sharing.

  3. 3 susan h June 1, 2010 at 7:50 am

    Dr. Kate: Congratulations and best wishes to you and your mom. My mother celebrated her 88th birthday on May 28. May you and your mom continue to celebrate many more!!! Thanks for all you do to remind us of what it means to be an American and we should never take those privileges for granted.

  4. 4 Al June 1, 2010 at 9:56 am

    Congratulations and many happy returns, DrKate. Have a great week.

  5. 5 susan h June 1, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    All roads lead back to Obama/Bil Ayers/and others who hate this country and wish to see its destruction as well as that of Israel.

  6. 6 Papoose June 1, 2010 at 4:12 pm

    Sweet. I am so glad you had this happy day to celebrate and commemorate, drKate.


    Investigate Code Pink; get to know the players and their affiliations:

    There is a video here:

    Bill Ayres friend John Kerry:

    video of the attack on Israeli troops by bogus peace thugs:

  7. 8 Papoose June 1, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    Ear Plugs, buy them, store them. Then learn to make them.

    Here’s why:

    I was lucky to find this. All the live videos are scrubbed. Even Homeland Security doesn’t have any info on these inhumane moving weapons. Do notice the homes along the streets. How dare they?

  8. 9 heather June 1, 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Papoose–leave it to James O’Keefe! Who do ya think is going to make the MSM headlines first–foxnews or ??


  9. 10 Papoose June 1, 2010 at 8:16 pm

    James O’Keefe is our Paul Revere, heather, to me.

    And also to me. The Gaza Flotilla is the exact same thing to me as Somali Pirates.

    RIP 9 threatening stoopid useful idiot sheeples. Lets hear from your dear Leaders, the American domestic terrorists, William Ayres, his emasculating whip, Bernadine Orenstein aka Dorhn(fraud) and that pink thing with the implants, Jodie Evans. Speak Up! The spotlight is yours, Traitors.

    Encore! 65 year old “kids” > Let it all hang out. Asshat clowns.

  10. 11 Papoose June 1, 2010 at 8:38 pm

    I pledge allegiance to Venesuela and To the Tracher of teachers, the most esteemed Hugo Chavez. (sniveling repugnant little rodent) Did this nitwit give up his American Citizen citizenship yet?

    Who is Leo Penn, btw? canyons of History…

    Daddio when he was wreaking havoc:

    Its a family kinda thing. Cowards with big mouths ~~ when it suits them. That’s the way Traitors operate.

    The Oval Office is screwed with this Team. Busted.

  11. 12 heather June 1, 2010 at 9:06 pm


    You go girl! Bring it on Barry and watch what true American’s do!

  12. 13 Quantum Leap June 1, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    Well drkate. How blessed you are. You got to miss tons of stressful news and enjoy some eye candy as well as be with your family. Lots of birthdays lately, mine included today. Young crone compared to the ones just mentioned.

    Now does anyone else get the distinct feeling this is Deja Vu all over again? I mean I distinctly remember a similiar flood of stinking daily catastrophes during Jimmeh Cahta’s rein. He shut down the textile mills and there were no jobs. Unemployment lines wound around the building for a few blocks. Gas lines and rationing galore. Kidnappings, wars all over, weak policies, hamas loving and full bearded guys wearing kerchiefs holding machine guns regulary appeared in our living rooms on the nightly news as Cahta BOWED to them ..whew we were glad to be rid of him. That screwed up the beginning of my young adult life and set me back many years economically. The youth of today, obots, will be adversely affected by pResident panty waste little do they know. It’s all in hindsight. Could Cahta be one of panty waste’s many advisors? Seems so. Damned rotten advice to give to a rookie community organizer. It’s time for the Tea Partiers to go down to the oil leak and increase the stink with our consciousness raising. We won’t leave until the grown ups plug the damned hole and that won’t be BP. It’s not their waters…but prediction is coming true…it’s going to catch a backdraft and swirl out of the gulf up the eastern seaboard right onto Kerry’s private beach. They are in for a surprise if they piss off the New Englanders and let this thing drag on all summer. They blame Bush but pResident panty waste just gave BP’s rig a clean report on the safety’s…then she blew up..but hey everyone got paid for turning their heads and not looking at the real danger. That was on panty waste’s watch not Bush’s.
    Welcome back Cahta!!!!!!!! Wonder why Hollywood’s lucifers are silent. Hmmm.

  13. 14 Quantum Leap June 1, 2010 at 10:12 pm

    I know it’s waist but not in this case.

  14. 15 One Nerve Left June 2, 2010 at 5:35 am

    Thank you Dr. Kate for the images and words. What a blessing to have your family together. Your words always inspire me to keep trudging along even though at times I am more than weary.

    Blessing to you and yours.

    We have DC marked on our calendars and plan to once again make the march to the Capitol. Every matriarch in my family has crossed over, but I am sure they are over there approving of my and all of our efforts. How wonderful that your mother is still with you and able to offer a first hand view of history.

    Keep up the good fight.

  15. 16 Helen June 2, 2010 at 10:23 am

    You are lucky that you weren’t brainwashed. I was. Not a day went by in my youth that my mother didn’t tell a story from those difficult days. She loves Roosevelt and held him so high on a pedestal that I thought he was God. No kidding.

    Now, I just listen and make no attempt to educate her. She’s 84 and her memories of those days mainly revolve around family and friends. Best to leave her to those than to try to force my knowledge on her.

    Beautiful story, Dk. It was wonderful that the entire family made the trip to celebrate her special day.

  16. 17 Katie June 2, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Dr. Kate – How wonderful that you were all able to celebrate your mother’s long life together…may she have many more birthdays and celebrations.

    Need a good laugh? Yesterday I peeked in on this post, and couldn’t figure our what “CRAYONS of history” meant.

    It wasn’t until today that I realized it was CANYONS. Duh!!


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