Thursday, July 17, 2008

I apologize for that dramatic ending...

But I was called away for our group call to Micah Garen and Marie-Helen Carelton, two UCROSS residents who wrote "American Hostage," the story of Micah's captivity in Iraq and Marie Helen's efforts to free him. They are simply amazing people. I want to be them when I grow up. They are documentary filmmakers, authors, reporters (for the New York Times) and, I believe, photographers as well (and Brooklynites!). Micah told us about his complex relationship with his captors, young men 20 years old or even younger. He said given the chance, most of them would take a visa to America and be gone the next day. They were the sons of farmers and manual laborers. Some hated him and America- other's didn't. While he explained his drive to understand his captors as a result of his occupation, his empathy and lack of anger in his voice was still incredible to hear. Both Micah and Marie-Helen remarked on the loss of control and the little things they did to gain it back. Serendipitously, they both relied on statistics to give themselves hope.

As for the rest of the weekend, we went to the rodeo on Friday night. It was an adrenaline rush. I didn't know what happened, but suddenly I was screaming for every rider, roper, and wrestler on the top of my lungs. I thought it was strange that Brooklyn social workers of Eastern European descent had produced a girl who loved to watch cowboys trying to stay on bucking horses, but then Kim (Grace's father) told me that one of the greatest bull riders was from Brooklyn. Maybe it is something in the air. The only part of the rodeo that was pretty horrific to watch was the calf roping. When the lasso went around their necks, the calves were jerks at a sickening angle. Then, they would try to get up, but kept falling down because their feet were tied. Mike had told us we wouldn't like that event and I wanted to prove him wrong. But he was certainly right.
And I think this is a nice segway into Mike:

This is Mike, So far its been really great out here at Ucross. Loosing my voice, getting the flu and being on the toilet forever because of it has been overshadowed by the great people I have met. Everyone's great and I've already learned so much from them. I've also become a pool junky and some of the cast has become addicted to mad men so I am happy.

Hello, this is Becky again. I just wanted to leave you off with some photos of the parade.

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