Day 11 . Bozeman, Montana

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Road trip across America… daily reflections by Ema and Elle.

By Ema ~ The heat awoke me after falling asleep to a rather chilly night. We began the morning routine of packing up and getting ready for the road again when a horse and his cowboy appeared in the field in front of us. Now that is the first time I have seen a horse being walked at a rest stop. He was a kind man and told us how he had just got the horse and was on his back back to his ranch outside of Bozeman. They had a little accident yesterday and had gone off the road and had to be towed out. The horse had a little wound, yet you could tell had he had found a better home and was on the way to better things, like apples. Elle offered the horse an apple but he did not know what it was, so the man took it too try again at feeding time in hopes the horse would understand it was a treat for him. He journeyed on and we prepared to do the same. The rubbish bins here are bear proof. We have truly in the Wild West. The mountain passes leading to Bozeman are becoming steeper and more rugged. Rock cliffs towering above the side of the road as I drive around the curves up and down again.

Arriving the town of Bozeman is always like coming home, but she has definitely grown up since my last visit, yet still her charm shines through with a downtown of brick buildings full of cafes, art and western culture. We did not stop in town, but rather went straight to the Bozeman Hot Springs, a place so dear to my heart, as it was my first Hot spring as a child. I used to come with my mama and godmother for ladies night when I was about 6 years old. There was once a skating rank on the side where a cafe and gym now sit, but the pools inside are still the same, with the addition of three more pools outside and a stage. We happen to arrive on a night for live music. Bozeman Hot Springs has added camping next door, so we were excited to be able to stay and walk to the springs. Unfortunately they were full, but had a cabin available. After a moment of consideration we decided to splurge a bit and stay. The cabin did also come with our passes to the springs and a breakfast. We settled ourselves in, made our beds, and headed to the springs, of course with our tails in hand.

I started the day in my pacific pearl fin fun tail, as I think the kids can be intimidated by my black and white Fantasea tail by the Mertailor, so I decided to wait til evening and the music time to adorn such. We met a kind women named Linda who has always wanted to change her name to Soleil, and has a daughter named Delphinia, called Fin. She loved mermaids. She invited us to come and stay with her and her daughter sometime. We also made a new friend named Weston who became our traveling companion for the day. We explored the different pools, ranging from freezing cold to burning hot. Elle and I gave away many cards as people were enchanted by the mermaids. A women named Jeannie joined us for while and asked Elle what her first memory was. I am not sure if anyone has ever asked that before and she pondered. She finally came up with an early memory of swimming in an aunts pool. The women also asked her who inspired her, and when she said me, I felt truly honored. Jeannie invited us to her horse ranch where she does therapy for people with horses. If we have time this round, or whenever we return she has offered us a visit. We stayed at the springs until close. The wind had picked up and I went into shock from the cold coming out of the warm springs into the night, but thankfully Weston was there to be my merwrangler and brought my tail into the building for me, while I worked on just getting myself there. I am very sensitive to cold and my body does not react well, locking up and causing coughing fits. Thankfully this night I reached the warm air of the inside before the cough set in. We had hoped to get some sushi for dinner, but did not want to leave the springs, so decided on a dinner over the fire, only to realize it was late on a Sunday and probably not the best time to be trying to find food. We were exhausted and settled for snacks and bed.

By Elle ~ Today we woke up and started our routine but were interrupted because there was a cowboy walking his horse we talked and tried feeding the horse apple, but it didn’t know what it was as the previous owner had many horses, so that horse probably didn’t get much attention, but now the horse had a new home with the guy we met. He took the apple and said he would try again later. After talking it was time for us to part so we got back to our morning routine while the owner cleaned up poop. We left and headed to Bozeman. Once there we asked about camping but they only had cabins but we decided to do it. We got out everything and the camping included a pass to the springs and breakfast. We put things in the cabin and went to swim. There were so many pools. Some hot, others cold. We swam and met this man named Weston. Sissy connected right away and they became friends. We also met this woman named Linda, she was different. She was really excited because her dream name was Soleil. After changing tails we went back and met a woman who was a counselor and her name was Genie. She asked me what was my first memory. I didn’t know what to say. No one had ever asked me such a question, so I didn’t know what to say. I talked with her for hours until she had to leave, but she invited us to her ranch and gave us her info. We stayed at the springs until closing. It was cold and sissy froze. We walked back to camp and had some snacks. Weston said he had to leave so we waited for him to leave and we got ready for our bed and i went to sleep.

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