Postcards from the Ranch

I am halfway through my grueling but inspiring summer of work at Ring Lake Ranch in the Wind River Range of western Wyoming. At the end of each day, I am physically and emotionally exhausted–out of gas–with no energy or brain power to even return emails or read a book.

By the time I’ve worked ten or twelve hours and walked six or eight miles, even self-care like showering and doing laundry feels as difficult as pulling off my dusty boots before I fall face down in my bed. I just want to sleep so that I can bank energy before the next day begins!

Which accounts for my radio silence in this blog and also in the world of social media, the virtual writing groups I usually participate in, and the other aspects of life beyond this beautiful guest ranch/spiritual retreat center.

Tortuguita, my little trailer home, after evening thunderstorms.

I do read the news for a few minutes each day, and it is generally so dispiriting that I have to go out and sit by the lake for a while, or pull some invasive weeds, or hang out with my friends in the ranch staff before I can regain my equilibrium again. I refuse to live my days angry or without hope, so I do what I can every day to spread light in the world.

Sunrise over Trail Lake, one of the lakes that shelter the Ranch.

The truth is that is all we can do, in whatever fashion fits who we are: live with love, spread kindness, advocate for those whose voices are not heard (and in this, I include the voices of the land as well as human voices), and be people we admire as much as we can.

All of that is powerful though, even if it doesn’t always seem to be. Spreading light in the world, living our every interaction with love and care are how we create the world we want to live in, moment by moment, inch by inch, day by day. How we live matters a great deal.

The delicate native sego lily (Calochortus gunnisoni) I freed from invasive cheatgrass the other day. A tiny bee zipped in to pollinate the flower as soon as it was no longer obscured by the thicket of annual grass!

In the spirit of that, I am sharing these photos of the ranch to remind us all of the good in the world, the everyday moments of wonder and joy and just rightness.

Blessings to you all!

An evening snuggle with Major the mule, the cuddliest of our 32-horse ranch herd! (Photo by Sam Handley)

2 thoughts on “Postcards from the Ranch

  • Susan, I’m trying to touch with some of those Women Writing the West. I have missed you all so much. My publisher is sending me to the Oklahoma WWW conference and I can hardly wait to see all those it’s been so long since…Your post card is filled with lovely thoughts. My husband and I visited Wind River a few years before he passed away. We enjoyed its beauty so much. I live in the lovely Ozarks, an entirely different but gorgeous scenery. I’ve been in a wheelchair for the past few years so it is difficult for me to attend without help, which I will have in October. I hope to see you then. Don’t wear yourself plumb out before then. See you.

    • Susan Tweit says:

      Velda, How wonderful to hear from you, and I’m thrilled that you’re going to be able to come to the Women Writing the West Conference in Oklahoma City this October. We’ll all be so delighted to see you! And I’ll do my very best to not wear myself to a frazzle before then…. 🙂

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