I spent the Fourth of July watching the 74th annual Chesaw Rodeo, so I’m in a roundup frame of mind. Let’s rope up various blog items.
–First of all, the rodeo itself. Chesaw is a little tiny town up by the Canadian border (the rodeo parade was longer than the town) and is arguably the only town in Washington State named after a Chinese settler. The photo above is the line up of rodeo princesses, which, along with barrel racing, used to be the only place you’d see women in the arena. Now, I’m seeing a few women in the adult events (bronc riding, calf roping, etc.) and about 50-50 boys and girls in the kids’ events. For readers who have never seen a rodeo, the objective of nearly every event is to see how rapidly you get thrown off the horse. Graceful landing on your feet is the exception, landing on your head is not unusual. So I am pleased to report that most children and women have the good sense to wear a helmet. Most guys are too macho to protect their heads with anything but a cowboy hat, which goes flying off in the first three seconds out of the chute. I can only wonder if aging rodeo cowboys are more likely to have Parkinson’s or other brain diseases due to a lifetime of concussions.
–While on this camping trip, I met a brilliant young research scientist. When I loftily told him I wrote about Parkinson’s research in my blog, he immediately deflated me by asking what scholarly journals I read. Um, I had to refer him to my research associates, Dr. Google and Dr. Wikipedia. Note to self: I really need to bone up on the basic science of Parkinson’s Disease before I get to the World Parkinson’s Congress in September.
–My fellow official WPC blogger, Dr. Bruce Ballard, is doing some impressive fund raising for Team Fox — two mile-long swims and one two-mile swim — IN THE ATLANTIC OCEAN! Brrrr…..gives me hypothermia just thinking about it. Click here on the Michael J. Fox Foundation page to donate, and here to see Bruce’s blog.
–My condolences are extended to the family of The Reverend Dr. C. Leon Hopper Jr., who passed away in June at 89. I had the pleasure of meeting him and his wife, Dorothy, and writing about his Parkinson’s journey. I kept intending to visit him again…another reminder to act on one’s intentions.
–Out of the blue, I was interviewed (along with a couple other official WPC bloggers) for a magazine called “More Than Motion”, sponsored by one of the pharmaceutical companies. Much to my surprise, the writer thought my blog was…clarifying? life-changing? erudite?….nope — funny! Gosh, Parkinson’s — there’s a real knee-slapper!
–Are you going to WPC in Portland, and are a foodie like me? Hot news — new food hall in historic downtown building easily accessible via MAX Light Rail from the convention center. Pine Street Market, 126 SW 2nd Ave. Portland, OR 97204, pinestreetpdx.com
–And last in the roundup: I did some beautiful hikes on this trip — gotta get more hikes in. Here’s a couple photos just for fun, plus a YouTube extra: Patsy Montana singing “I Want to Be a Cowboy’s Sweetheart.” (I have always wanted to yodel like that!) Happy Trails, Buckaroos.