Ribs, Rods, and Rock N’ Roll

Vermillion rods pic

The quiet little college town of Vermillion South Dakota came alive with the sounds of music, the tastes of BBQ and the sights of shiny chrome bumpers, this weekend.  It is a new festival that is literally “off the beaten path”.  We had a wonderful time connecting with new friends and enjoying time together.  The food was amazing, the music was energizing and the community was welcoming.  The whole experience left us wanting to linger longer on our ‘mini-cation’ (Monday always comes to soon).

Be sure to give Soul Experiences a call to reserve your next adventure away!  We had a great time and would love to have you come along for our next journey!  Next stop….Lincoln Nebraska, for our Husker Staycation then on to Nebraska City for a taste of Autumn on our Apple and Wine Excursion.  Check out www.soul-experiences.com for all the details of our upcoming fall tours.

Travel well my friends



Welcome Riders!

These words were printed everywhere!  Huge banners announced the welcoming spirit.  Small signs in store fronts reassured the masses they were encouraged to step in and enjoy their hospitality.  Not just one town but multiple communities rolling out the welcome mat for this gathering of motorcycle enthusiasts.

Since I was a very small child I had heard about Sturgis.  The good, bad and the ugly of it.  The assemblage of bikers coming together to celebrate their passion for the open road.  I had never had an opportunity to participate, never a bike to ride let alone a bike to drive.  I love the feeling of freedom while on a motorcycle.  The flash of speed, the whipping of wind on your skin, the beauty of a well designed bike, the rumble of power, all these things lead to a mysterious lifestyle, that I have never known.

My travels took me into the Black Hills of South Dakota last week.  The breath taking beauty of the region was reason enough to desire a twisting road trip.  Arriving a full week before the advertised dates of, what has now become Rally, I thought I might see the preparation stages of the community.  I was not prepared for the multitude of motorcycle riders I was lucky enough to drive with.  Not only has the event grown so large that it invades Sturgis South Dakota but it reaches to Deadwood, Lead, Spearfish, Hot Springs, Rapid City and beyond.  Events large and small in continuous motion starting before dawn and lasting well into the night.  It was a sight to behold.  Beauty of design intermingled with art and innovation, creating two and three wheeled modes of transportation.  The amount of pride owners feel towards their bikes is second to none. 

Returning home I thought of all the excitement I would be missing in the Black Hills this week.  Talking about my travels with anyone who would listen I was on a “travel high”.  Then social media erupted Monday night with the tragic loss of a motorcycle enthusiast.  Not in a far away area, but right here in our community.  A young woman was lost to this world in a horrible accident.  She was a bright light to so many, an avid rider, with a zest for life.  A vigil was organized to honor her and rally support for each other in our grief.  As we lit candles, tears were shed, hugs were given and thoughts of our loss flowed freely. 

Rally around each other in celebration of our humanity.  Rider or not we are all here, on this planet, together.  Stay safe on the road at home and away.

Travel well my friends.  

Majestic Black Hills


The beauty of the land beckons you to stay. The clarity of the vistas encourages you to linger. The sounds of voices speaking various languages evokes pride in the country that you call home.

I do not remember well my first visit to Mount Rushmore. In fact I do not recall that family vacation at all. Except the towering faces of the men carved in the side of a mountain. I was to young to understand the meaning of the artwork emblazoned on the face of a rock cliff. Now as an adult I look with wonder at the perfect blending of art with engineering. The tools used to transform a solid natural mountain face into a man made work of art were clumsy but expertly wielded. The artists vision a mere six foot tall sculpture, enlarged for the world to see.

I often marvel at the innovation of people. The vision of one person, the organizing of a multitude, the completion of a goal, the development of the vision and the lasting impression on a great number of individuals.

Let us all remember to be the ‘visionary’, the ‘developer’, the ‘organizer’, or the ‘voices’ of the impression. Go, travel, learn and tell your stories!

Sunday Inspirations


I love Sunday mornings!  It is a meditative time for me.  I feel the beginning of the week will start as soon as I finish my morning devotions.  Whether I am in a church, traveling, or in my church home, I feel once I have taken the time to spend some time “talking” to my Lord I am ready to start a new week.  The world will hurl numerous roadblocks at me in my life. It is my responsibility to be as ready as I can be to take on whatever is in my road of life.

This Sunday is the end of my travel week.  I love stirring memories from my childhood travels.  I was very young the last time I was in the Black Hills of South Dakota.  Memories of family time floated to the surface of my mind as I walked the path to view Mount Rushmore.  That feeling of deja vu was intensely followed by the feeling of excitement from my explorations.

Look for more South Dakota excerpts starting tomorrow, as I showcase this neighbor to the north of Nebraska.  Have a blessed Sunday, in all you do.


The waves rolled ever on and on.  I would crest one just to tumble down to the next.  Up and down.  Wave after wave.  At the pinnacle of each wave, for a moment, you could see forever.  The vista was more waves, stunning but immense.  Beautiful, yet overwhelming in my own insignificance.  I would be seasick if not for the reality of being on dry land.

My mind’s eye shifts back to the here and now, not my imagination.  The waves turn golden from their crystal blue.  My boat, reengineers itself back to my vehicle.  The smell of sea water vanishes replaced by a clean dusty fragrance.  The waves become soil and yet, roll ever on and on. 

As I drive this highway in the northeast corner of Nebraska, I can see for miles.  The hills rise up inviting you to travel on to see what is over the next rise.  It is like being a child again on a treasure hunt.  At the top of these gentle hills, I am sure I can see South Dakota and Iowa at the same time.  The enormity of this sparsely inhabited land reminds me that I still have so much to explore.