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Report from the Heritage

My Tuesday evening “Montana History” went well last evening at the Marias Heritage Center in Shelby. We have exactly three more stories/chapters to read in “The Doctor Wore Petticoats”. I’m really looking forward to starting our next book, “Bound Like Grass”. It’s a Memoir from the Western High Plains and the author, Ruth McLaughlin, was just at the Conrad Public Library several weeks back. I wish I would have been able to attend. “Bound Like Grass” is McLaughlin’s account of her own-and her family’s- struggle to survive on their isolated wheat and cattle farm in rural eastern Montana. It’s a small world indeed, Ruth’s husband is Mike McLaughlin and I’ve been friends with Mike since we started the 3rd grade together and went all the way through junior high and high school. I would have ended up graduating(?) a year or two later than Mike (1964) except for the fact that I was too tall and too old to repeat any of my high school years. Listen up kids, if you want to be a slacker, just be sure that you grow too tall for the rest of your classmates…and having your birthday fall at the “right time” doesn’t hurt either. Mike has to be very proud of his wife who lives in Great Falls these days where she teaches literacy and writing. Folks up here on the High Line might remember the McLaughlin’s from when they lived up here as Mike was employed by the Center 4 Health for a number of years. Mike stayed in the mental health field all his life and retired not that long ago. I believe I spilled a drink on his wife at one of our high school reunions. That said, I am more than looking forward to reading this woman’s book at the Heritage Center. Hopefully, we’ll begin next Tuesday.

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