Decisions and Road kill!

The following quote caught my attention for 2 reasons:

  1. It certainly pertains to me – at times my decision making skills frustrate even me!, and
  2. It made me think of the American critters that often end up as road kill (squirrels being one of them).

decisions

Have you ever seen a squirrel cross the street? squirrel

I have – whilst driving the car – and I am sorry to admit, it did not end well for the squirrel. I had slowed down as I could see the squirrel on the side of the road, and after dallying for some time, he made it to the middle of the road (by this stage, I thought I could move on), however, he suddenly changed his mind and darted back to where he started – he didn’t make it!

So, not being able to make a decision and stick to it can result in dire consequences! This is something I need to keep in mind (although most of my decisions are not a matter of life and death). I know that my indecisiveness comes from a fear of failure; but really, most people probably don’t really care what decision I make – so just make a decision and move forward. Hopefully I am learning and getting better at it – but that is my problem and I digress.

What led me to write this blog post was the thought of squirrels and other little American critters I have encountered whilst here – particularly the ones that are not in Australia. For example (besides the squirrels), I have seen skunks, armadillos, badgers and racoons; most often it is as roadkill however! There are also plenty of turtles that end up squished on the road at certain times of the year around where we live.

Armadillos generally come out around dusk, have very poor eyesight and don’t move quickly enough to avoid a car, so often end up squashed on the road. I have only seen 1 live armadillo since being here. Skunks too are often encountered roadside and your olfactory system will alert you of their presence well before your eyesight will! Have you encountered the rather unique odour of a skunk? It is definitely a smell that assaults you and one you cannot mistake!

I don’t think most Americans realise that in Australia we do not have skunks, squirrels, armadillos or racoons. We do, however, have our own unique variety of critters that end up as roadkill; foxes, Tasmanian Devils (in Tassie), possums, wombats and kangaroos (which can do quite a bit of damage to your car if you hit one) – and yes, I have personal experience with that one also! At least, for the most part, American wildlife (here in Texas anyway) won’t require a panel beater for your car (although I am sure hitting a deer, elk or similar would not end well for the car either).

Please share your experiences and comment below – I would love to hear about it! 🙂

And don’t forget to like and share if you enjoyed this post.

A lesson in Chickasaw

A trip to the Chickasaw Cultural Center: A lesson in Native American History

I have been wanting to take a trip to the Chickasaw Cultural Center for a long time now and this past weekend we finally made the trip.

Chickasaw Warrior statue

Chickasaw Warrior statue

The Chickasaws are one of the Five Civilised Tribes, (which refers to the five Native American nations – Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek (Muscogee), and Seminole), they have their own constitution and are federally recognised as a Native American Nation – the Chickasaw Nation. The Chickasaw’s traditional lands were originally in the south-eastern states of America – principally Alabama, Tennessee & Mississippi before they were forced to relocate in the 1830’s. The US government wanted to acquire all the lands east of the Mississippi and therefore forced the re-location of thousands of Native Americans to “Indian Territory” (Oklahoma).

The Chickasaw Cultural Center is located in Sulphur in Oklahoma, about an hour & 40-minute drive for us from home.

Cloak made from turkey feathers

Cloak made from turkey feathers

The Center is located within a 109-acre property. The Cultural Center is made up of a collection of buildings set in beautifully landscaped grounds and is dedicated to the history and culture of the Chickasaw people. There is an exhibit center/museum with plenty of information and some interactive displays, a research center & library where individuals may trace their genealogy and study the Chickasaw history, culture and traditions, a 350-seat theatre, a replica of a traditional Chickasaw village and even a café (we had lunch here and the food was great). There are several water features throughout the grounds, an outdoor amphitheatre and a sky terrace where you can observe the traditional village from above. I have to say that this is a world-class facility. The buildings and amenities are brilliant. My only complaint would be that there were a lot of exhibits that were obviously replicas; there didn’t appear to be very many genuine artefacts on display. However, what was there was good.

The Chickasaw Village

The Chickasaw Village – viewed from the Sky Terrace

It is free to look around the grounds, the village, the theatre and the library – the only thing that requires a fee is admission to the exhibit center which house a “museum” that offers a walk through Chickasaw history and culture with displays of and any special exhibits, but at $6 per adult, I think it is good value for money and worth the effort. All-in-all it was an interesting trip and I learnt something new – always good!

The Center is open Monday to Saturday 10am to 5pm and Sunday midday to 5pm all year round (except major holidays)