A Frazzled Pioneer

Today is Pioneer Day. It's the day we commemorate the pioneers entering the Salt Lake Valley. Parades, carnivals, picnics and fireworks abound. Personally, I celebrate the fact that I was NOT a pioneer. I would have been lousy because...

The pioneer women had to cross the plains, walking for days and weeks on end, with their children. I don't even like to take my kids to the store.

Most of their belongings were left behind. I can't go for an overnight trip without a suitcase. One look at that hand cart and I would have been all- "President Young, I need another handcart. I don't know if I'm going to want to wear the blue calico dress or the red one. Plus, I just can't leave my bonnet collection behind."

Some pioneer women walked 1000 miles pregnant. Pregnant. And, they gave birth on the trail. Oh, no. Me, pregnant, with the thought of walking everyday, would have made me into a great negotiator. I could have gone out to the mob and tried to convince them to wait. "Look, I'm pregnant. I really don't want to give birth out there on the trail. I don't even like doing it at home. So, if you guys could put your plundering and pillaging on hold for say, four months, I'd really appreciate it."  I'm sure that would have worked.

The pioneers were known to sing to pass the time. Have you heard me sing? I'm sure I would have heard, "Sister DeMille, why don't you just hum? Quietly."

Some women became pregnant on the trail. *ahem*  I. Don't. Think. So.  They slept on the ground, under the wagon, children next to them, and the rest of the company in earshot. Hello. About the time my husband started snuggling my dirty, sweaty body, I'd have said, "No way, Pioneer Boy. When we get to the valley, you build me a house, with a bedroom and a door, then we can discuss it."

When Brigham Young saw the Salt Lake Valley (166 years ago today) and announced, "This is the place." I might have stepped up and said, "Seriously? It's a desert. I mean, we've come this far, maybe we could go a little more." Of course, if I'd continued, I would have ended up in Nevada, and then I'd want to come back to Salt Lake.

I don't like to be hot. I don't like to be hungry. I'm sure the pioneer women didn't either. The difference is, they did it, without complaint. (Maybe there was a little complaining.) They did it because their faith was bigger than any obstacle put in front of them. I admire them. I love them for doing it.

And, I'm so grateful it wasn't me.


  1. I've driven cross-country on I-80 several times, but it wasn't until this last time (Christmas 2012) that I realized we were driving along the same path that the pioneers walked. I paid a lot more attention to the land as we drove past. I can't even imagine having to drag handcarts across that ground with no road, up and down hills and into the mountains.
    Also, you are hilarious. "No way, Pioneer Boy." Ha ha.

  2. Laughing, laughing, laughing!! And agreeing wholeheartedly!! :)


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