“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous…”

Well, my babies, I found out tonight that I’m officially placed in Tulsa for the next two years.  Yippie skippy.

Doesn’t seem like much of a shock, I know.  I’ve been shouting Tulsa to the high hills for two months now, but really the whole time there was always a chance I was going to end up in Oklahoma City, or as I have begun abbreviating it, OKC.

I was desperate for Tulsa for a few reasons, the majority of them gleaned from yokels on some shady message boards.  Tulsa is more ‘cultural’, these yokels tell me.   There is less shopping and no sports.  OKC is a lot bigger, newer.  Tulsa is older, more historic, less icky.  Tulsa is in the foothills of the Ozarks in North Eastern Oklahoma.  OKC is dead center.  It’s the capitol.  Political stuff goes down there.  Tulsa has a river.  Yes, yes it does.

Okay honestly, I don’t really know crap about either of them.  I just picture Tulsa a little closer to the mountains, a little more open to the prairie.  Plus, Tulsa was the birthplace of a favorite genre of mine–Western Swing music, which I’m sure is still a big favorite with the local kids, yes siree.

Today the sons of the old west are still killers, but of another varity.  They are killing them with hot music and swinging them with swinging strains of rock solid rhythm!

There are a few other reasons why Tulsa caught my attention, but mostly I just wanted to go to the smaller city surrounded by prettier country for various hiking excursions and interactions with rattlesnakes.  I didn’t want to end up in OKC because I didn’t want to have to untag all those Tulsa websites I’ve favorited over the last few months, and to find a bunch of new yoga studios I’ll never go to and CSA farms I’ll never work at in the few months left to me.

There’s a heck of a lot more planning to be done, everything from finding a place to coordinating travel to buying teacher clothes, which I’m pretty sure means sweaters with 3D yarn sculptures hanging off of them and/or mumu dresses.  I’m ready to get going, though.  Ready ready ready.

Before I don my cowboy hat, however, there is the TFA “Institute” in Phoenix, AZ, to be endured.  5 weeks of 16 hour days in a city in the desert does not sound like a good time to me, though I am of course excited to be learning how to teach.  

I wonder if I’ll get any free time to wander off and explore the wilderness while I’m there?  I have this intensely romanticized idea of the Arizona desert which, let’s be honest here, would probably kill a Wisconsinite like myself.   Still, ever since first discovered Edward Abbey in a gift shop in New Glarus, I’ve been desperate to give it a wander.

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through pastoral valleys tinkling with bells, past temples and castles and poets towers into a dark primeval forest where tigers belch and monkeys howl, through miasmal and mysterious swamps and down into a desert of red rock, blue mesas, domes and pinnacles and grottos of endless stone, and down again into a deep vast ancient unknown chasm where bars of sunlight blaze on profiled cliffs, where deer walk across the white sand beaches, where storms come and go as lightning clangs upon the high crags, where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you — beyond that next turning of the canyon walls.”  — Edward Abbey

Truthfully, I’ll be spending my three minutes of free time collapsed on a thin mattress in my air-conditioned dorm at ASU.  Still, it should be an interesting summer.  Mostly I just want to get to my new city and dig in my heels for a while!

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~ by Rachael on April 2, 2011.

2 Responses to ““May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous…””

  1. “Truthfully, I’ll be spending all my free time collapsed on a thin mattress in my air-conditioned dorm at ASU.” Sounds just like the good ‘ol days. But with air conditioning.

    Congrats on getting Tulsa!

  2. Bon courage ! Yes, go ahead and follow Curiosity – this alone takes us far and into and usually through all sorts of scrapes and dangers, pains – but we are compensated from time to time by joy-full events, co-incidences, near-misses. Good Luck from Paris, France.

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