July is the month we find the club members scattered all over the west on the search for cold clean water and hungry trout. I see the posts on the social network of beautiful vistas and the occasional severe weather events happening lately, snow closing Tioga for a short time due to snow or severe hail.
Having just returned yesterday from my annual blacksmith gig in Wawona History Center on the southern end of Yosemite Park, I did not have time to send in the monthly President's Line until the deadline (now). Just a couple things to mention while I worked there was the incredible diversity of peoples visiting the national landmark and the record number of cars driving through it.
One of the books in the library at the blacksmith cabin was about the women who first lived in the valley to homestead and create a life in this most remote location. Recall that the first horse trail to cut through from Mariposa opened in 1855, The first woman (Madame Gautier) rode sidesaddle the entire journey, which must have been very difficult with the attire a woman who was well off would wear in those days. Although she was the first white woman living in the valley there was another, known locally as just "Indian Mary" who was of the tribe Awahnee who had first inhabited this very holy place to the Native American people. Having been captured by Colonel Savage, a fierce Calvary officer ordered to clear the valley of all native peoples called "savages" at the time who were fighting for their ancestral land, having all their oak forests (acorn staple food) chopped down and the deer and game plundered. Chief Tanaya formed the band of warriors called "Yose-mite", and after capture, was offered money and clothing for the land. He shrugged his shoulders and said, "what need for?".
Mary (later Maria) as an old woman returned to the the valley floor and in her native dialect exclaimed, "Chorlock-Chorlock" when seeing Yosemite falls again, surprised it was still there after the white man changed everything. "Loya" the word for Sentinel Rock. When asked to spell her birth name she replied, "How do you spell what a bird sings?"
On a club note, I want to thank those loyal and selfless souls who always step up and bring it all together for a successful event. I am talking about our annual July BBQ at the Grange. I was happy to see our first president Ernie show up, looking very tan and fit and certainly happy to be retired and not hanging out in the shop every day and not fishing. Special thanks to Roy Gunter who purchased all the food and cooked it up along with Dennis Davie as co-chef, Steven and Milana Rawson who donated the beverages and other utensils/supplies, Sam Bishop lugging the heavy BBQ from its storage garage at Chris Walters' home and the members who took time to whip up a dish or two to share.
We put out a donation box again this year and thanks to all who attended, I estimate at about 40-45 cheerful fishermen or is it "fishers" we took in almost exactly what it cost us for the food, so we virtually broke even. Although we still held this event essentially alongside the freeway, which is noisy and not the best place for a real picnic, I suggest we discuss having it in a park, have a bonfire, play horseshoes, cast on a lawn etc. We can agree on this for next year.
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