The Day the Music Died

"I can't remember if I cried,

when I read about the widowed bride.

but something touched me deep inside,

the day the music died.


........a long, long time ago, I can still remember, Elaine belonged to an internet chat group dealing with spinning and fiber. Elaine enjoyed this chat group, as some of the participants were funny, some knowledgeable; you get the drift.

One day I came home from work and Elaine announced,

Elaine: A woman in Kansas needs someone to rescue four llamas

Me: Oh.

Elaine: Yeah, she has cancer and she is moving to Oklahoma. She can't take the llamas.

Me: Oh.

Elaine: She lives in Hartford, Kansas. That's in the southeast corner of Kansas.

Me: Oh.

Elaine: I've talked to her, I told her we would be there Saturday.

Me: OHHH......H! I guess we are going on a road trip. What are we using to carry llamas in?

Elaine: I have that handled. I've borrowed Dr. Johnson's trailer.

I'm not against road trips, I have driven from northern Colorado to Texas twice to attend Jerry Jeff Walker concerts. Once to Austin and once to Gruene. I actually tried to go three times but one time it was snowing, I had to turn around. This tidbit has absolutely nothing to do with this story.

Elaine and I got out the trusty Rand/McNally (I told you it was a long time ago.) and determined we were about to embark on a 700 (+, -) mile road trip to rescue four llamas.

When we arrived in Kansas, I realized we were not actually rescuing the llamas, we were buying the llamas. I'm not sure that Elaine knew this before we left for Kansas. I am sure I will never ask, but my mind went into overdrive. Did I just pass a couple hundred llamas that I could have bought and not drove 700 miles? Jerry Jeff popped into my head. Did I do it again? I remembered driving not once but twice to Texas to watch concerts. I could have just bought an album in town.

The woman insisted the llamas stay together. If we took one, we took them all. Elaine wasn't going to have it any other way, she wanted them all. We loaded up, Joe (the biggest), TK (the crankiest), Kelly (the athlete) and Zack (the prettiest). (We have two photos of Zackin the store. Stop by and see them. You might as well pick up a couple skeins while your there. Ivy made me write this part.)


Joe (shaking hands)

These four llamas provided Elaine and I so much entertainment, pleasure and life over the last twenty plus years. Elaine and I entered human/llama endurance races with these guys. We went on walks. They were our family.


TK (the cranky spitter)

One by one, the llamas got everything they could out of life and passed away. Except Zack. Zack lost his three buddies, but he just hung on. At the start of the last few winters, Elaine and I would silently wonder if this would be the year Zack would pass. His black and white hair started to get streaks of gray. Each spring Zack would greet the warm weather. (Our veterinarian believed Zack was the oldest llama he had ever seen.)

Kelly and Adam (little white alpaca)