These are stored memories, I’ll be coming from off the top of my head, no research really, maybe for spelling, names and such. These are memories etched into my head, they are scenes of the best and most interesting time of my life; allow me to revive them just a bit here, I need that.
In 1995 I was working in good old St. Louis for the Missouri Coalition for the Environment (MCE), I was their Membership Director at the time. Eventually I became Administrative Director, I suppose what you’d call the highlight of my employment life, and since has been, but you’ll see that it also clashed with a major turning point in my life.
It came vacation time and my mother was living in Pinehill, New Mexico, I headed out for a 6-day visit with her at the end of June that year (1995). I was heavy into fishing at the time and going to the cow pastures of New Mexico was not my dream vacation, I was a water boy. However, I needed a visit with mom, so I packed up my 1972 Chevy 1 ton RV, and headed for the wilds (literally) of New Mexico. After nineteen hours of continuous driving I arrived at Pine Meadow Ranches, Lot 33 located in western Cibola County. There are several places like this in various forms across the Southwest. Here at Pine Meadows it’s a hundred down and seventy-five a month for ten or fifteen years, two and a half or five acre lots, hell of a deal really. Nearly twenty years later I own and live on one of those lots. It is a long and dreamy story, both nightmares and adventures.
The six days I spent at my mother’s were epic in my life. I had parked my RV at the top of a hill on my mom’s land; it was 4am at the time. At 8am, I found myself being woke to the smell of dried horseshit, burning outside my cabin window. My mother, who had lived there for two years by now, was gone New Mexico nuts. The purpose of this effigy is to ward off gnats, no-seeums, some would call; angry little bastards, bitn’ motherfuckers. Anyway, I actually found the smell quite romantic, in a manly sort of way. I still like and use it today. In any case, it was there in the waft of horseshit–my adventures began–June 26th, 1995.
After a day of driving around with my mother and seeing the locality, we returned to my mothers place and got ready for a campfire evening. Please understand that my mother’s place was quite primitive, in modern standards anyway, she spent the first year living out of the back of her 1980 something Chevy Hatchback. By now, she had a nice 12 fit. camper trailer, no juice yet, she was 63 I believe, maybe 64, me 40. She did have a well by then I believe, with a generator to pump it, but no, I think she was hauling, yeah, she was a water hauler then. She got the well a year or so later. I made several journeys from St. Louis to New Mexico from June 1995 to March 2000, at least eight round trips, so it gets a little combobulated on the details.
Before the campfire was sunset, my mother asked me to maybe go off somewhere while the sun set cuz she had a quiet time at that moment. I’m like, “yeah, mom, I’ll be back.” My mother has taken many journeys in her life, ‘this was one of them’, I thought. Truth is, throughout my life I had vicariously lived many of her adventures, from afar at least. So’s I head off to a spot on a high hill, comparative to the landscape, to leave my mother be. It was on a lot just north of my mothers. At the crown of this hill is a fence, the other side belongs to Dean Bond, the last remaining rancher in his family going back to the 1850’s, there about. At the time, they were part of the Mormon invasion of this area, but a beautiful spot at sunset, nonetheless. I found a post to lean on at the very crest of the hill. Staring out to the south, looking at a mound the locals call Black Mountain, I suddenly was struck by the events of the day, for lack of a better explanation. Thoughts of a Great Spirit overwhelmed me. I could see myself in this spot a thousand years ago, whew!
Well, call it what you will. I’ve given it every description I can think of, from a vacation high to a life changing moment. Turns out, it’s somewhere in between. One thing for sure my life has never been the same since. The little vision could be summed up in one phrase that came to me at that moment, and has plagued me in so many ways since; I’ve come to accept I never will get it, this “walk into the desert” crap. My god the roads that phrase have taken me down, whoa! Still is, nearly twenty years later.
Well at that time, what the experience turned into was a ravenous desire to head for the rocks, for the truly wild, Indian lands. Yeah, I became an Indian-wanna-be in a about two seconds. I had seen some rock formations over on Bonds land, a place they call Bond Mesa, a ten thousand acre stretch of canyons, buttes, mesa tops and low laying grass bottoms. From a distance, it looked like a place riddled with ancient history, the same now as 10 thousand years ago. My blood on Indian fire, I had to see it, feel it, and experience it. I’m kinda big on experience stuff, was highly into it at that time in my life. At this moment I was blinded by it. Hard to explain, my mind and thoughts were obsessed by wanting to be in those rocks. No shit, I’d never been taken over by anything so powerful in my life.
From my mother’s to Bond Mesa was about 4 to 5 miles, but there was a way to drive to the north end of Pine Meadows sub-division and cross the fence over to Bond’s ranch land; making my hike a little less than two miles to the rock buttes I had my eyes on. There was a way to gently rise to the mesa top from its backside, but I choose to walk the bottoms and perhaps climb up the buttes once arriving to my destination. As I came to a clear view of the front side of the mesa and its buttes, a Golden Eagle swooped off the edge of the highest butte, then glided its way down about 200 feet, into the trees below. Now the fire was raging, from there, the day was full of prayers, rock stacking, all the stuff mid-westerners do who go ga-ga here. I was no special case. Nevertheless, the day never had a moments rest from awe, and I’ll give no shame or embarrassments to it. I spent the next four days spending my time in those rocks, hiked there everyday, probably covered at lest 50 miles in that time.
This love affair with Bond Mesa carried on through the last five years I lived in St. Louis. This was a difficult time, but made for majestic experience at the same time. I was torn everyday of those five years. My wife of the time was not into my wanna-be status, rightly so. I was wanting to move to New Mexico, I became a backpacker of the Missouri Ozarks, went nuts on it, spent as much as three weeks sometimes in the woods, by myself, being wild and…Indian. However, it was also disrupting my marriage and my work with the environmental group. We were in the process of finding a new Executive Director. I actually had a fair chance at getting the position. I would have had to study up and groom myself for it, but the search took two years, I could have easily become a contender. Big job, a very popular group as state groups go, in the top five of the nation I suppose, long history, big names on the board, supported by Emily Pulitzer of the famed literary family, likely more prestige than I could have handled, truth being. Nevertheless, my eyes were on New Mexico and nothing was going to stop from me getting there, I started arranging for my departure in 1998, both at home and at work. I got my dream in March of 2000, been here every since, 14 and half years now. It was a very disturbing time prior to getting here. I was either heavy involved with the group I worked for or in the woods. My wife was quite distressed behind it all, we’ve since divorced and remain friends. But what a hard time, I was so confused, so wrapped up and selfish. I only felt at peace when I was in the woods. I see-sawed from frustration to wonder like I was in a contest of endurance.
But it passed, for awhile anyway. In the end, my ex-wife actually was the one who wound up arranging to move to New Mexico, an irony of sorts. She’s still here, in Albuquerque doing good. I’m out here on my land, the same lot I had my little vision on, my mother bought it for me in December 1998; so much history now.
In June of 1999 my now ex-wife and I took a trip to Mesa Verde National Park near Cortez CO. While there, I found a book by Thomas Mails titeled, The Hopi Survival Kit, after one read my Indian adventure took an entirely new turn, one that still goes on today. During the first 5-years on this stent with the Native American life-ways, I studied and read many books on Indian culture, mostly the Plains Indians, but this book by Mr. Mails, redirected my path.
The first week of August 2000, I was finally able to take my first trip to Hopi Land. My destination was to the village of Hotevilla. There was to be what they call the Home Dance, the ceremony dedicated for the return of the Kachina’s to their home in the San Francisco Peaks of Arizona; where they live in spirit until the monsoons come and they leave their home to become the Cloud People bringing rains for the corn, beans, squash and melons. Goes something like that anyway, I’ll not get too picky, besides, there seems to be many aspects and interpretations to the Home Dance ceremony. This is close enough.
I missed the dance though, was a day late, came on a Sunday and the dance was Saturday. By now, I had learned from books quite a bit about Hopi, and particularly about Hotevilla. It’s located on Third Mesa. There are three mesas where the pueblo style residents reside, thirteen villages in all. The original village is Oraibi, which was founded over 900 years ago and is the longest continuously inhabited village in America and now still has about 30 residents, last I heard. In 1904, the residents of Oraibi came into dispute over the ideals of what is best described as the progressives vs. traditionals, which pretty much explains it all if you take the two words literally. Today, the clash is not so distinguishable, though still awake a plenty, but it is rare to find a true traditional, mostly folks are somewhat mixed about it. The hard-core traditionals can be disguisable by their dress, look and is age discriminate, usually it’s the elders, but not many of them left.
Again, there is no one way to look at this; the perspective always has to be wide concerning the Hopi. They stand out as the mother tribe as Indian spirituality goes. They are much like the Tibetans, lots of weird coincidences between those two worlds. Hopi astrology will match just about any of that in science or culture anywhere. Everything happens by stellar arrangement. There was at one time 265 days of ceremony per year spreading across all three mesas, all based around stellar timetables. That has dwindled heavily since the 20th and 21st centuries arrived, I would be surprise if there are thirty practiced now, outside of the kiva’s anyway, a kiva is their spiritual center and meeting place for elders, there are usually more than one per village, more like three on average.
Well this dispute got out of hand in 1904, by then the US government had pretty much invaded and had taken control of the Hopi, the last tribe for the government to deal with actually. Did you know that the Hopi were the only tribe to never sign a treaty with the US government? So technically, they are not bound by the American constitution…yeah right. That made no matter to the missionaries, BIA agents and the forces of the American government. The Hopi were gathered up, sent to schools in Winslow AZ, and assimilated into the American way of life…that’s another “yeah right”. I don’t think any tribe has been able to avoid the white indoctrination’s of the American lifeway better than the Hopi people.
You would be amazed to still see that in 2014 Hopi Elders are out with there planting stick, there hoe, and a hand full of corn seeds; in the desert sun planting one plot at time. My girlfriend and I were with two of them as recently as October 2013, Roosevelt and Loretta, they had just finished their harvest of corn, white corn and were out shucking in front of there rock stacked home in Oraibi when we arrived. The traditional Hopi home as laid down by their God of the present Fourth World would have the Hopi with only a table, a chair and a bed, that’s pretty much the home of Roosevelt and Loretta. A beautiful tribute to the Hopi tradition, these two are.
Back to the dispute. How was Oraibi gonna settle this debacle? Finally, the village chief declared a tug-a-war, whichever side caused the other to cross the line in the sand, would have the loser leave the village, so the Hotevilla inhabitants of today are decedents of those who lost the tug-of-war, the traditionals of Oraibi in 1904. But because they were the traditionals that has since given Hotevilla an unspoken title as the spiritual center of Hopi Land, leaving Oraibi to be lost spiritually and decaying there forward, while Hotevilla has more or less flourished, especially given the times.
Well you can see why I was pretty hopped up about being there, walking thru the streets of the village. Though the village is only a little over a hundred years old, Hotevilla still has the ancient feel and look of any pueblo anywhere in the Southwest, more so actually. After a touring the village awhile, I decided I had been present long enough and so decided to head back to my car outside the pueblo. As I was coming out of the village, I saw a Hopi man, probably about 60 or 70 years of age, restacking some fallen rocks from a wall at the edge of his home, the last home as you come out of the village.
Out of nowhere I found myself approaching this man, he was breathing heavy and kind of bent over. As he was stacking the last rock, I came out with something like, “Hard job, eh?” He replied, “Oh, my nephew was drunk last night and hit the wall with his car and knocked the rocks down, so I am picking up after him”. I don’t know why, but I just came right out with it, “Hey sir, I am very interested in the Hopi culture, would you mind spending a little time with me and give me your thoughts about being a Hopi in the 21st century? And give me your impressions of the Hopi way as well?”
To my surprise, he accepted the request gladly. I told him I’d be back in about an hour after I had some lunch. Upon my return, I found him more or less eagerly awaiting his discourse. He talked very slow, very Indian and hard to understand, he was full blooded Hopi, likely spoke his own language most of the time, but his English was good enough and his slow talk helped a lot. We talked all afternoon, I was invited for supper and wound up moving my vehicle next to his house to sleep in that very night. I don’t think I could have found a better mentor, not because he was so knowledgeable, but his stories were more fascinating to me than anything I’d read thus far. I came to learn that he was a well-known and loved figure in the village of Hotevilla, known as ‘Uncle Ben’. Along with Ben, his sister Nona, her daughter Melody, and Melody’s two kids Zoi and Skyler made for the household, a wonderful bunch of people. I came to know the Hopi child thru the two kids, I loved them dearly, haven’t seen them now for at least ten years, they probably wouldn’t know me anymore.
From that day forward I had many visits to Hopi and to see Ben and his family. I usually slept in my car at the Hopi Cultural Center. There is a grouping of picnic tables a couple hundred feet from the center, I would park, get set up and do my domestics there. Or sometimes I would stay next to Ben’s place and do the same, perhaps eat with his family. Their food though simple, I actually found to be quite delightful. If you are going to have mutton stew, do it at Hopi, but not at the cultural center, get it from a dweller there. Also, try the “pudding”, it’s not a desert, but a mix of wheat shoots, corn, sugar and whatever else but it is a great snack. Traditionally it sits in a bowl on the table, you just simply dip your finger in it and lap it up. It is something that the people ‘share’ together, in that case, it feels right to dip with the finger right behind someone else.
Ben liked to take me around and show me things about Hopi. He even gave me directions to Prophesy Rock, a petroglyph scribed by Masaw (various spellings), their God of the Fourth World, probably the most sacred place in Hopi, though I am sure many a non-Hopi person has been there to see it. I have taken three people there, I think I should not have done that as it was an attention getting thing. I apologize now for that, to Ben and to the Hopi. The ego gets a bit wieldy when becoming a wanna-be-Indian. Hopefully, I have gone past that stage…well, I’m fairly sure I have, thank god.
Probably one of my most enduring memories with Ben is when he took me way the fuck out into Hopi Land to have me try and catch an eagle chick. Yeah that’s right, an eagle chick. The Hopi use a grown eagle at the Home Dance to sacrifice at the end of the ceremony, which is a long day, let me tell you. I don’t know how those Kachina dancers make it through the day. I once watched the dance all the way through, started at daybreak and went till nearly dark. Eight separate dances with less than an hour of rest in between, usually at least 30 dancers, heavily adorned, it’s July and hot, and each session is about 30 to 45 minutes of non-stop moving your body dancing. I did once see a Kachina dancer drop to the ground, they picked him up and put him right back in line. He immediately continued.
Anyway, back to the eagle catching thing. So we do this long drive across the sandy roads of Hopi, so sandy that I nearly got stuck several times, and finally came to a place where we parked and then walked about 20 minutes to a particular location Ben was intending for. I mean this was so far out in the desert it kinda scared me. I thought, ‘what if my truck don’t start?’ So after the walk we finally came to a place where there was a nice rock for both of us to sit down on comfortably, I believe this was a rock Ben had sat on many times in his life. Immediately he starts into stories. I didn’t even get a chance to ask, “what the fuck are we doing here?” I don’t remember all the stories, he must have told stories for an hour straight and me maybe getting in one or two questions the whole time.
I do remember one story he told, it was the last one actually. The story was about what made the black bug of the desert Southwest a black bug. He said that black bugs in the Southwest are the people who have died and they were bad, or something. So they had to take one step a year to the West and eventually, after about 800 miles, they came to a furnace or maybe a horno oven or something. Anyway, they had to go inside this thing and burn and be burned down to this bug, then to walk the southwest deserts for their remainder of eternity I suppose. So, be good I guess. This is a very short version with much left out, but don’t remember the details. Ben had lots of details and sidetracks in his stories.
Oh yeah, back to catching the eagle chick. Well he seemed to be done with his stories, and so I ask if we should maybe get back. He said, “No! We gotta catch the eagle chick!” (They catch them at chick stage in May so they’ll be grown by July). He said, “there are chicks up there on that tall rock butte”. Well, this butte was about 50 feet high and one round column about 20 feet thick, standing alone in the sand, with fairly smooth sides, in other words, nothing to cling to. I said, “Ben, how the hell we gonna get up there?” He replied, “You’re gonna get up there!” I didn’t know what to say. I told him there was no way for me to climb the damn thing, I was starting to panic and get a bit mad. Suddenly he shrugged and said, “OK then, let’s go back.” He didn’t seem mad at me or anything, he carried on as if it was totally fine with him to forget about the chick, it baffled me. I mean we had traveled all this way, it was at least 6 pm by then, and we going to come back with nothing? But, that’s what we did, and nary a word said again about it.
This last episode I told you was an event that seem to regularly occur in my dealings with the Hopi, of some order anyway, though usually much smaller scale, subtle things I wouldn’t remember except that they occurred, more or less indefinable. Remember, the Hopi are a culture set apart from many of the tribal cultures of America. You will find yourself quite lost much of the time, but it doesn’t matter, as long as you are feeling it. It’s like poetry, you can read Wordsworth, coming away scratching your head, but still feeling enlightened.
This experience happen to me another time when I was invited to go out again to the wilds of Hopi and participate in a round up of cattle, another all day and into the night adventure. The eagle adventure with Ben was all day as well and we only had two ears of white corn and some crackers I had in the truck to feed on for the day. And only one liter of water. Well, on this roundup trip it was exactly the opposite. God damn the food, it was around all day then when the cattle were all rounded up we sat down to a feast such as I have never seen before. The roundup cattle pin was were an old adobe home was, it had been abandoned for decades I’m sure. Had holes in the ceiling, large cracks in the walls that sunlight came thru, and the furnishings only consisted of a long table made from rough cut wood that appeared about to fall over, it was at least 10 feet long. Other than that, there were two wood cooking stoves, one outside and one in, the women brought camper stoves to supplement the cooking, massive amounts of cooking.
Oh, dust everywhere, did I mention that? The women were actually there before the men early in the morning doing the cooking, cooked all day. Well when we sat down to the table, (they brought chairs and benches) there were at least 15 to 20 people squeezed around it. Me and a guy that married into the clan (this event was a clan thing) were the only non-Hopi there, he was white also. OK but the FOOD! It was literally stacked on top of each other. I mean that if there was a pan of chicken there was a pan of round steaks stacked atop of it. A salad bowl would have a pan of potato salad on top of it. I don’t believe there was single item on the table that didn’t have another item under it.
It was another wonderful day in Hopi, but I have to say, I am not sure the majority of the clan was happy with Ben that I was invited; some treated me nice, others made me uncomfortable and perhaps not wanted. Nothing obvious or serious, but the vibes were there from time to time. I experienced this off and on over the years with Ben’s clan and some family members outside his home. It was something that told me I was doing something wrong by getting this close to Ben and his family. Ben didn’t seem to mind and even when I asked him about it, he’d nod it off. But Ben was a very friendly guy to whites, he said he liked them a lot, I think that confused and bothered his peers, but he was so liked I think they ignored it.
There was one time when Ben’s ease with me should have been checked closer, I was disappointed at him for it. I was heading out after a visit and he said, “I want you to go to a dance in Shungopavi today before you go home.” The village of Shungopavi is on Second Mesa, and is very strict about not allowing whites or non-Hopi’s into there ceremonies. I reminded him of that but he said, “It’s OK, if someone gives you trouble tell them that Ben Wytewa from Hotevilla invited you.” I said, “yeah well Ben I actually gotta be getting back, I don’t think I have the time.” Then he insisted that I go, almost got irate about it, so I said I’d go and stay for awhile. He said, “No! I want you to stay until the dance is over.” I humored him and said I would. He didn’t give me any good reason for his insistence even though I ask, he just repeated that he really wanted me to go.
Shungopavi is a good size village and has probably the largest plaza where the ceremonies and social dances are held. A social dance is just a dance and not a traditional ceremony, though the social dances that I attended seemed not to differ much from the ceremonies, but I suppose to the Hopi eye there is a world of difference between them.
So I pulled in the entrance of Shungopavi and immediately I see tons of cars and people, all Hopi folks. I almost turned around right then. But I remembered that Ben was insistent that I go so I pressed on and found a place to park that gave me an easy exit and far away from the plaza. As I walked toward the plaza I was getting a shit load of stares like, “what’s that fucker doing here?” Everyone seemed to be dressed quite traditionally; I thought ‘what the heck is Ben doing, is he trying to get my ass kicked for not catching the eagle or something?’ This was the same weekend of the eagle event. Finally, someone actually approached me and told me kindly that this event was for Hopi only; I hadn’t even made it to the plaza yet. I told them Ben Wytewa from Hotevilla invited me to the ceremony, they said, “Oh OK, that’s good enough.”
I am sure they could see I was scared down to my britches and perhaps that is why they accepted my explanation so easily, I really don’t know cuz I’m sure they didn’t even know who Ben was, maybe they recognized the Wytewa name, his dad was a big wig at one time. Whatever, so far I was in unscathed. But then just as I was about to approach the plaza and enter, there were two Hopi police cars right before the entrance. Immediately one of the cops got out of his car and stopped me quick and said I could not enter the plaza if not Hopi. So I bravely told him the invite thing again and sure enough, he bought it just like the citizen did… I slowly entered the plaza scared to hell. I was thinking I otta get out of here and go ask Ben what the fuck he was up to, but I instead quickly found and empty chair. These chairs were just inside the plaza as if they were there for folks wanting to leave early, that suited me.
I sat down, still enduring the stares, there must have been nearly a thousand people there, crowed all around like beans in a sack, on roof tops, edged into the dancing area, a mass of people, Hopi people. I kept looking for some white folks, and though the crowd was big, I did spot an elderly white lady, by herself like I was, sitting quietly like me as well. And then I saw a young woman at the other end of the plaza, very white looking, like a yuppie, but it appeared she was with some Hopi folks and was talking with them.
About five minutes later the dancers came onto the plaza. OK, I don’t know how to describe this but, the immediate intensity of the crowd and especially the dancers was literally overwhelming to me, and scared me even more. I was excited to be witnessing such a thing, but felt so out of place I could almost cry. It was as though the crowd was as much a part of the ceremony as the dancers. Their movements were so in time and the beat was so rhythmic that Buddy Miles would have died of envy. And the intensity, well, I just can’t describe it, I felt like I was literally on an acid trip, and all the Hopi present as well, like were all dropping acid from the same bottle. This happened like this within seconds of the dancers coming out; hit me like a bullet.
It never let up, in fact, it grew more intense as the dance went on. After about twenty minutes of gong thru this, I decided I just couldn’t take it anymore. I felt like I was losing my mind. Before I knew it, I realized I had gotten up and was practically running out of there. I got back to my car, I was breathing so heavy you’d think I had just sprinted a quarter mile. I drove home in silence, trying to figure out what had just happened. Ben never gave me an explanation for why he sent me there, it’s still a mystery to me 12 years later, and since that day and that dance, I find that Shungopavi is a place I rather just bypass.
Between the years 2000 and 2003 I must have made at least ten trips to Hopi. Since I have only been there maybe five times the last 11 years. There are many reasons for backing off, the Shungopavi incident the least of them, but a small part of it. One major reason is that Ben died near the end of 2002. Now, the Hopi, like many Indian tribes, do not like to talk about someone after they have passed. There was a time that I held to that tradition for their sake. But what an egotistical thing that was for me to “attempt” to follow Hopi tradition, like I was Hopi or some damn thing. So the other day, I finally decided to write extensively about Ben and the Hopi experiences he gave me. I am not Hopi, and Ben was my friend, more than a friend, he was an experience. One that I’ll never forget and will always treasure deep, deep inside me.
We weren’t like hotshot buddies or anything like that, we were both experiencing each others cultures, mainly his to me. But I shared with him much of what my life as white man was about. I did not speak of whites very kindly, and still don’t. Ben and his nephew Frank, both scolded me for being so down on “my people”. They felt I should stand up for them, regardless of their shortcomings. I didn’t buy it. I stood fast to my critiques. I feel as though our coming to these lands and taking over like we did was an abomination. We said, “a good Indian is a dead Indian”. And we meant it. For that, I can’t seem to find any reason to be understanding, and so it remains.
My adventures continued though. I have probably been over to Bond Mesa at least 30 times since 2003. I’ve spent the night over there wrapped in tarp while it rained. I’ve been face to face with owls, had eagles swoop down over my heard, Watched them lift off from Ponderosa’s while being above them on cliffs. Have encountered almost all types of wildlife in the area, including mountain lions, but have not yet seen a bear. I took on totem animals as a spiritual walk, prayed to the spirits on a daily basis at my shrine where my vision first took place. I am still a wanna-be-Indian, only now I have no shame for it.
Yes Indians are just people, and have committed atrocities unthinkable, yeah I know. There are tribes of all kinds and some I wouldn’t have given two shits about in their time. Yet there are tribes, like the Hopi, that if we just listen to them, our world would evolve like corn making it’s first break through the soil. Our white culture has so much to learn from indigenous peoples. We were indigenous at one time; we have it in our blood. I would encourage us to listen deep for that knowing, and perhaps we may become caretakers of this earth instead of its ravenous consumers as we are now.
There is much more I could share about Hopi and my wanna-be life surrounding it, but I think this is all I can muster, Nevertheless, thank you for sharing with me my story. Kwakwa Kwakwa and Kwakwa again, two more times. And thank you Ben, most of all.