Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Americana Extravaganza - Day Three (Buffalo and the Wild West Saloon)

And so we come to the final day of our wonderful, whirlwind Americana extravaganza.

We started off Day Three with a drive through Custer State Park - you can't come to South Dakota without seeing some buffalo roam, after all. That was the primary intent of our visit to Custer - and, boy, were we pleased. We saw all kinds of animals, including but not limited to these crazy beasts we call buffalo.

After driving... and pausing in amazement... and driving... and pausing in amazement... we finally made it through Custer State Park and decided to continue our drive through Needles Highway. A couple of folks had highly recommended doing the drive through the lovely and scenic Needles Highway... but MAN! Talk about the buzzkill to end all buzzkills. I honestly did not understand what the hype was about.

Oh well, gotta document (and check things off that list), right?

After that buzzkill, we ended up heading to Jewel Cave for a little tour. I hadn't been to a cave in ages, but MAN! I loved this thing - again, I think it comes back to me being a complete nerd and fully loving and appreciating the history that surrounded the formation of this cave, but oh well. It was so fun!! Complete with lanterns and everything!

After just about the most rugged thing we did on this trip, we ended up back in that beast of a Suburban... ready for probably the most impromptu... experience (it was nothing short of that, to say the least) of our trip.

Okay, to back up, one of the girls on the trip, Trang, is not only lovable but... well, crazy. Anyway, before / during our trip, she'd indicated how one of her life dreams was to do one of these ridiculous dress up in historically-themed costumes and have your picture taken. I mean, what kind of DREAM was this?? Of course, we all laughed it off in a "Oh, Trang" kind of manner, but... well, imagine our surprise when we were driving along and spotted... of all things, a storefront designed to do JUST that - take pictures of visitors all dolled up in Wild West attire.

I mean... seriously?

Not gonna lie, I was kind of cringing as we entered this little storefront. I had no idea what to expect - I mean, I've done some crazy / shameless things in my life... this had definitely not yet made my list.

I swear, though, Trang was absolutely giddy with delight. I'm not kidding - she was literally GLOWING and BEAMING as soon as we'd entered that store. You couldn't help but get wrapped up in the merriment / excitement... it was absolutely contagious!

And that, my friends, is how we came across what turned into one of my top 3 favorite activities of this whole Americana extravaganza. Each of us ended up getting all dolled up (with the help of the store owners) in Wild West attire and... well, posing against a saloon backdrop.

I think the picture just about says it all, no?

Needless to say, we could NOT stop laughing about this experience - it was so ridiculous... and yet, just. so. amazing.

What a way to end our last night of our trip, huh?

And that, my friends, concludes the tales of our Americana extravaganza. Yet another D List gone A List B List (let's not get carried away here) State Vacation for the books.

Til next time!

*Special thanks to Purvi and Trang for allowing me to straight up steal borrow their pictures from this trip.

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