7.22.2009

Hallowed Pioneers

I live in Utah, in case you forgot. I live amongst the Mormons. (I am even one of them, sort of.) A little history lesson; the Mormon's were driven out of Missouri by angry mobs who didn't like them. They trekked across the plains and mountains and settled in Utah, which was at that moment not even in the US, it was part of Mexico, but only for another year or two. They didn't care, they just wanted to be left alone after being run out of several states.

The best part of living in Utah is the month of July. Not only do we celebrate the 4th of July but also the 24th of July. It's Pioneer Day. I like it for several reasons. One, it extends the celebration of our country for a few more weeks. Second, the city does their local Carnival/Fiesta Days that week. Fiesta Days are a lot of fun. The carnival comes, the kids get to ride exorbitantly overpriced rides, we get to eat at little booths under the hot sun, and the shops on Main St. have a sidewalk sale (I'm kind of curious as to what Dirty Jo's puts out on their tables). But the two best things about Fiesta Days are the Parade on the 24th and the Rodeo! It's a pretty awesome rodeo. The first few years I declined saying I didn't like rodeos. Then they finally talked me into going one year and it was FUN!

The only part of the 24th of July I don't like is the constant talk of Pioneers. As summer approaches I look forward to the 24th and all its festivities. And then they start talking about Pioneers at church. I know the Pioneers sacrificed a lot to live their religion. I know they are an important part of our history. But almost every Sunday in church someone spends their whole lesson or talk glorifying the Pioneers. Seriously, they are people like you and me who did what they had to in a hard situation, not unlike most people today.

Several years ago the youth were preparing for a Handcart Trek. It was supposed to make them more aware of what their ancestors sacrificed. I say "their ancestors" because, thankfully, I have absolutely no Pioneer heritage. The youth were told to bring a story about one of their Pioneer ancestors who trekked across the plains/mountains and (this is the best part) if someone did not have a story one would be provided for them! I was livid! Who gives a rats ass whether you have a pioneer in your ancestry or not.

I was so mad I turned to Olaf and said "I'm so glad our kids have no Pioneers in their history! I can give them a real story to tell!"

Olaf looked at me a little perplexed, "But our kids have Pioneers in their history."

"How did they get there?" I asked, completely shocked. This can't be true, I know of no Pioneers in my lineage. Did he know something I didn't?

"They're my kids too and I have Pioneers who traipsed across the plains in my history." I was so disappointed and upset. My kids no longer have the novelty of being amongst the Few in Utah with No Pioneer Heritage.

Thank goodness for the Rodeo or the 24th wouldn't be any fun at all.

9 comments:

Ferrara Family said...

I seriously seriously love your blog... You are so honest!!!! I am one of the few mormons in Utah who have no pioneer lineage :) Yay for Fiesta Days :)

quilts and quirks said...

Oh, Donna I have family relatives that came to California about the time of the pioneers. Rebecca A. Barr Lewis left Missouri in the spring with her family and arrived in Calif. in October 1852. This lady had a baby in Calif. on April 15, 1853. So, our pioneer was pregnant also!! What a great and brave mother and wife she was. SURPRISE

sally said...

I absolutely agree with you. Unfortunately my children inherited Pioneer heritage from my husbands side. Thankfully his family actually went back to England and left Utah. I love it.

Marge J in Cape said...

Just a note to let you know that Kathie and Calvin on their way home from Iowa made a detour over to Nauvoo today. We lived in Quincy just south of there many years ago. However at that time they were just starting to think about reconstructing the city. John and I have been there and found it very interesting and a friend of Pam's was married in the temple. Never know what our ancestors did low those many years ago. Grandpa Merriam's father came from Canada and his family left the US during Revolutionary War because they favored England. They were called Loyalists.

mommybake said...

Donna, I agree with you! Mom and Dad are our Mormon Pioneers!!! But, the kids got the pioneers that did the whole treck with Dean's side of the family too! I almost forget that every year!! CRAZY

Tim said...

Donna, Just like you I married into this crazy cult heratige. Mine happens to be Dutch and I do like the pastries and parades but there is not a chance in hell they will catch me in a Dutch costume.

Donna said...

Come on Tim, you would be so fetching in one of those Dutch Girl outfits!

mommybake said...

Everytime I read the head of this blog - I keep thinking it says - Halloween Pioneers!!!!

the HeartTongues said...

i agree with mommybake; i thought it said that too the first few times i looked at it!! :)

i love how you say, "i am even one of them, sort of." haaaa! ;-)

i kinda know what you mean about July 24th..! and all of the Sundays for 4 weeks before it!

i did the trek thing with my ward last year, and it proved to be an awesome experience...