Due to painstakingly slow internet connections out here in the west, I was unable to fill you in on yesterday's fun until now-here's day 3-try to control your enthusiasm.
Wednesday dawned cool and rainy, but when you are in the Black Hills, you have so many options that the weather can't bring you down. We packed up and left the casino, happy to have taught Charlie the lesson at a young age that casinos are quite unglamorous, and downright depressing when you come right down to it. We scorned the breakfast buffet at our hotel, and instead found some dandy family dining on the edge of Deadwood, where we joined locals and in-transit bikers for a hearty breakfast. Journeying out of town, we encountered a great antique store that deserved an extended stop (and offered great photo opportunities:) Charlie is quite a trooper when it comes to antique stores. (wahahahaha)
And just down the road a piece, the Chubby Chipmunk, home of the world's finest truffles (anyone who uses 'edible magic' in their chocolate gets my vote), fulfilled our chocolate requirements for the rest of the trip. And if they hadn't been open, we could have simply used the Chub-O-Matic truffle machine, found right outside the store, where you can get your chocolate fix 24 hours a day. I love clever business owners.
Our travels continued, and we happened upon a shop that made both Mike and I happy-they sold Filson clothing, and Brown Sheep Company yarn (my favorite yarn in the whole world). The only thing that prevented it from being perfect was that they had no weapons for Charlie to purchase. But he was still a good sport:
Our travels continued as we headed south down 385-passing through Hill City, Custer City, and Hot Springs on our way to the Mammoth Site. We took the tour, and saw the amazing work they are doing there, recovering nearly 60 wooly mammoths (so far) that were discovered several years ago. Really fascinating stuff. I have a secret wish to go on a dig some day, guess I better get my back in shape first.
We stopped at an adorable little cafe on our way back through Custer, and enjoyed some buffalo chili while giggling over old "Far Side" cartoons, before heading back to Hill City to check in to our cozy old (1940's era) cabin.
Mike and Charlie picked up snacks for dinner at the local grocery store, and before dark we drove to Mount Rushmore for the evening program. It was moving, and beautiful, and makes one remember how lucky we are to live in America. The night was very cold, but the amphitheater was full to bursting with people from all over the country, and all over the world. Really incredible. We were one of the last families there, snapping pictures of the monument in the moonlight. (photos I will share once I can get them from Mike's camera). More to come!