Montana: Punching Cows
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Lesson: Punching Cows in Billings

Setting the scene:

      The family stays at a dude ranch near Billings. They also make side trips to the mountains and a nearby indian battlefield.

People in This Story:
  • Dad; Mel; Mom; Tina (cowgirl); Wes
  • Brand Name or Company Name item is in green.
  • Slang terms are linked to the Slang Dictionary. Click on the term to view its meaning.
  • "Speed Talk" is in pink; meaning is in [brackets].


    Mel:       I thought we would be in a podunk town, but Billings is bigger than I expected.

    Wes:       Watch out, Mel. You don't want to anger any local hicks.

    Mel:       Is she what you mean? [Points to a cowgirl, who is walking towards the family.]

    Tina:       Howdy, everyone. I'm Tina from the Double-Bar R-K dude ranch. I've got an old rattletrap parked outside. Let's load your things and mosey on. To tell the truth, I can jaw all day 'cause [because] I love to jabber away, but I promised to round up all of you and make it back before supper time.

    Mom:       Hello to you, Tina. We appreciate you coming for us. Wes, please help load our bags.

    Wes:       Sure thing, Mom. Tina, What say [What do you say] we compare notes about riding horses later at the ranch?

    Tina:       Be glad to chew the fat with ya [you]. I love horses and can ride like the wind.

    [Early the following day, Tina drives the family over Beartooth Pass. It is considered one of the most scenic roads in the country. It also is one of the highest in the world.]

    Dad:       We must be entering Cooke City because I recognize a landmark, Miners Saloon.

    Tina:       Do you need a snort? We can stop if you want. I never booze up, but won't hinder anyone's preference.

    Dad:       No thanks. We don't drink either.

    Mom:       Tina, it's the middle of summer and feels cold enough to snow. Is this normal?

    Tina:       Yup. I've been up here on July 4 with friends and had a snowball fight. You should see Cooke City in winter, when the pass closes. During the summer, though, quite a few people drive over it on the way to Yellowstone Park.

    [During the next few days, Tina and some cowboys teach the family to ride horses and punch cows. However, no one expects them to brand a cow or ride herd, especially at night.]

    Dad:       It's our last day here and I asked Tina to show us two sites: Pompeys Pillar and Custer's Battlefield.

    Tina:       You mean Battle of Little Big Horn. Custer hoped to defeat the Sioux and other indian tribes, so people would elect him president of the U.S. in the future. He was dead wrong to attack the natives and later he was just plain dead.

    [The family takes another overseas trip, this time to England. Click here to see the following story: Museum in London.]

  • © Page Publisher: Duane R. Hurst