The Trapper really didn’t have much to carry on the short walk to the lone wigwam but he understood that the grandfather was teaching his his grandson hospitality. However, even in it’s non-functional state and completely devoid of powder he chose to retain his long rifle. The grandfather agreed after making sure the weapon was unloaded. As they approached the well built shelter the grandfather bid him to stay just on the outside of the encampment until he was called for. The Trapper knew that as a guest he was expected to observe all customs without questioning the reasons. The grandfather approached the door of the wigwam wich was simply an elk hide hung over the threshold and spoke to someone inside. After a few minutes he motioned for the boy and the Trapper to come on in. Inside a fire burned low in a stone circle. A young girl that looked to be around the age of twelve tended to a woman in her 30s that was very pregnant. The walls were lined with cots that were covered with furs as were the walls. A few shelves held gords and various boxes made from either bark or rawhide. From the exposed framework hung personal possessions that were mostly tools and implements for daily living in the forest. The grandfather pointed to his own long rifle hanging over his cot and then to an empty cot with a series of empty pegs and instructed the trapper that he could use that space for as long as he stayed with them. The grandfather turned to his granddaughter and asked her if the soup was ready. The love he had for his family was obvious in the gentleness of his voice and sparkle in his eyes. She collected a few small tins from the shelf and the Trapper’s tin from her younger brother and returned with one portion of hickory nut suop at a time. The grandfather said a few words of blessing over the meal and they began to eat. The trapper was thankful for the family’s hospitality but he wondered how they came to be separated from the rest of their tribe. Of course protocol wouldn’t allow him to ask. The grandfather noticed the uncomfortable look on the Trapper’s face and decided to break the tension. He pointed to a hatchet on the far side of the hut. He explained that when he was a boy he would bring extra furs to the white man’s camp and trade for different things. Tin cups, knives and even the hatchet on the wall all made a big difference in the quality of his life. He made a little money by guiding trappers as well. Even the long rifle that he’d shown the trapper earlier was a traded item. Eventually he was put in charge of trades by his elders and was a good negotiator for his people. The trapper explained that he had come into the mountains to make his own fortune but hadn’t done as well. He made enough to survive but he never got rich and just become accustomed to life in the wilderness. The grandfather smiled at him and advised that in his experience traders often did better than trappers. The Trapper thought for a moment but was interrupted by the pregnant woman who softly said, It is time for this baby to come. The grandfather didn’t panic but simply gathered his grandson and the Trapper to escort them outside where they would sit by the big fire and wait.
Proceed to The Trapper Part 6
I am adding additional social media to my network. Eventually, I’ll be leaving Facebook behind for a multitude of reasons. Even though the Lloyd’s Lens Photography page is strictly non-political I have been restricted from interacting with followers with no explanation for why. But it’s not just that. For years now Facebook has throttled content providers in general. They encourage us to grow our audience and then want to sell us back the access to them. In addition, they collect and sell the data from our interaction. So Facebook has become an entanglement of thorns. In response I have created the Lloyd’s Lens Photography Discussion Group on MeWe. We can still interact directly on the blog but starting today I’ll be looking for more platforms that respect the privacy of my followers and don’t limit who gets to see the post.
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