As archery continues to eat my brain, the Bosun spent this past weekend completing the installation of towing equipment on Traveler. (We also spent some time cleaning her because it seems that every time we work on her—outside—she gets pretty dirty—inside.) As of now, we are set to hop aboard her and hit the road any time, with our little Chevy Spark in tow. (It seems that manual-tranny Chevy Sparks make ideal tow vehicles, so my love of unfancy stick shifts has fortuitously brought the perfect tow vehicle into our lives. What luck! With no planning!)
Towing gear will just give us so many more options for exploring when we are on the road. Uber and Lyft have their limits (though they were perfect when I was at Louisiana’s Bayou Segnette State Park and needed a ride into NOLA’s French Quarter). And one certainly doesn’t go randomly frolicking about town in a 32’ class A—or at least random frolics come more arduously in a class A!
Right now, a sparkly, bubbly, mirage-y little plan seems to be forming in our boat/household: we will drive the RV north to South Dakota next month for a large archery tournament, after which I may be able to get some coaching from an old friend who lives up there. Then we will return to those northern environs this summer (a far more rational time to venture to the land of Lewis and Clark) for me to get some more coaching.
In other news, I’m on this Robin Hood kick to complement the archery. Exploring the roots of the legend with J.C. Holt’s scholarly Robin Hood, I see a theme I’ve seen many times before: women have a long history with competitive archery. From medieval women with longbows, to eighteenth-century ladies of fashion displaying their talents at tournaments, to Queenie Newall taking home a gold medal for Great Britain (at the age of 53!) during the 1908 Olympics, the gentle sex has long rocked the range.
(Also on the topic of books, I talked about Mary Doria Russell’s Doc during our Wild West ramblings this past summer. I finally posted a review of the book on Goodreads and “Bookstagram,” so I thought I’d share it here as well, for anyone looking for a literary jaunt back in time, with a couple Dodge City Boot Hill shots, too:
Russell's well-researched, bittersweet story of Doc Holliday in Dodge City offers tenderness against an Old West tableau of rough muddy streets, wounded fancy women, drunken gun slingers, and dog-tired Old World priests. She gives readers the Earps and Holliday, and the women who loved them, in a new light, a human hue. While the book hardly hurries, the prose often dances, and the ending reverberates like the report of a six-shooter.)
Anyway, I shot tonight (but not a six-shooter). And I’ll be shooting tomorrow night. And the night after. And.... Kinda fun to be obsessed again.