LJWorld.com weblogs Dakotah Drives

Dakotah - The Winter's End


http://worldonline.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/blogs/entry_img/2009/Jan/10/IMG_0136.jpgI am mesmerized by the sound of horse hooves as they mark time on the pavement; a rhythm of song sung in a lullaby. To the man driving his team toward the next destination, it is a sweet symphony.The world in which we live is so large; yet at times, minuscule in its separation between solitude and community. Or, as Dakotah puts it, “Have you ever noticed that they, who have the least, give the most? I heard one fellow tell this way, 'they, that bring the least, stay the longest'. When asked to explain, Dakotah said, “The one’s that have learned how to live with what they have can outlast those who need to have every cotton-picken thing they’ve ever had. They don’t know how to survive.”According to Abraham Hicks and the Law of Attraction, “like attracts like”. This past week Dakotah has been the benefactor of many ‘like’ people who came to the aid of one of their own; and as such, his 130-mile drive to Turlock will continue Sunday morning.http://worldonline.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/blogs/entry_img/2009/Jan/10/Dakotah_in_the_mud_2.jpgEquipping a nineteenth-century mode of conveyance with twentieth-century technology can be a challenge. Above the wheels, Dakotah’s wagon is as authentic as one can build; however, the wheels and braking system are present-day automotive technology utilizing 16” tires with electric trailer brakes.The brakes are needed for down-hill travel, as the horses pull, but they don’t push. Dakotah’s wagon weighs approximately 4,000lbs (fully loaded, including his supply trailer) and the inertia of going down-hill would push, and possibly run over, the horse team. “I got this brake controller for about a hundred bucks, but the digital adjustment only rises in increments of five at a time, so I am constantly locking the brakes when I go downhill, and the thing just gave out” Dakotah said.One of the cowboys who came to his aid last Sunday, Don Nichols, was laid off from his job where he made PVC electric conduit, but that didn’t stop Don from being at the side of Dakotah. Don, and his girlfriend, Diana Sindeff, own seven horses between them, and keep them at the six-acre property owned by Don’s mother. The same property Dakotah stayed on Monday and Tuesday this week. http://worldonline.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/blogs/entry_img/2009/Jan/10/hayes-endeavor-brake-cont.jpgDon spent most of his free time shuttling Dakotah to various places to look for repair parts over the last few days.. “I’ve put almost one-thousand miles on my truck this week taking him (Dakotah) all over the place” Don stated. When I asked Don why he would go to such lengths for someone he didn’t know, Don said “I wish I could meet a man like Dakotah every day. He is straight-forward and honest and kind hearted. My brother and I (Mike Nichols) took him (Dakotah) out in our truck all day to look for a brake controller, and we found one. I will tell you, it has been a pleasure to help this man”http://worldonline.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/blogs/entry_img/2009/Jan/10/The_Drive_to_Turlock.jpgKnowing that today (Saturday, January 10, 2009) would be the last day they would see each other, (for a while at least) Dakotah said his goodbyes to both Don and Mike. But before they parted, Don said, “I had this hundred-pound bag of oats in the back of my truck we picked up for Dakotah, but before I could take it out and give it to him, Dakotah looked at me and said ‘I know you’re as stubborn as me, but I want you to have that sack of oats for your horses’. We didn’t say thank you, we just shook hands, and I could tell by the gleam in his eye, he knew how much I appreciated the gesture”.And so, the circle of goodness and community continues from an act of kindness that spawned the same. A musician and poet I know, Bob Bennett, wrote the following words for a song entitled, Small Graces, and I think they sum it up quite well:Sometimes they slip by without notice;Sometimes they’re very hard to see;Other times it’s oh so clear when they’re happening to me.These are the small graces; the little moments when the miracles come;These are the small graces; small graces leading me to the larger ones.And in no small way, we are all reminded to let small graces lead us to the larger ones.Drive on Dakotah.Other stories about Dakotah can be found here: http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakot... http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakotah-drives/2009/jan/01/willits-redux/http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/dakotah-drives/2009/jan/05/dakotah-the-drive-ends/


Ronda Miller 9 years, 4 months ago

The small graces of your writing style have enabled us to view the large graces of life surrounding us and all that that implies. Human kind reaching, helping, uniting as one; each separate spoke on the wheel reacting together towards the larger picture. What a beautiful, complex, complete picture it is. Thank you for letting us view it through your unique perception.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 4 months ago

Or, as Dakotah puts it, “Have you ever noticed that they, who have the least, give the most?" ... 'twould seem those who give the most, little as they may have to offer in a material sense, truly do have the most.With each new installment, I marvel at the ways in which this solitary figure, wrapped in the meager belongings which distinguish him against the broader natural backdrop, continues to enrich the lives of those he encounters... enhancing my life, with but a window on his and theirs, half a continent away. Thank you, Charles, for tending the portal.

Alia Ahmed 9 years, 4 months ago

Charles, you are a very gifted writer in my very humble opinion and I'm glad were are getting to know Dakotah through your eyes. Write on, Charles, write on.

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