Engaging in Mindfulness
Renee will lead you in two short mindfulness practices. Try some short mindfulness practices to engage in the present moment, this small gratitude and loving kindness practice to help you be more mindful. We’ve also included “6 Mindfulness Exercises You Can Try Today” by Alfred James.
6 Mindfulness Exercises You Can Try Today
By Alfred James
In this busy world of ours, the mind is constantly pulled from pillar to post, scattering our thoughts and emotions and leaving us feeling stressed, highly-strung and at times quite anxious. Most of us don’t have five minutes to sit down and relax, let alone 30 minutes or more for a meditation session. But it is essential for our wellbeing to take a few minutes each day to cultivate mental spaciousness and achieve a positive mind-body balance.
So if you are a busy bee like me, you can use these simple mindfulness exercises to empty your mind and find some much-needed calm amidst the madness of your hectic day. I’m going to cover 6 exercises that take very little effort and can be done pretty much anywhere at any time:
- Mindful breathing
- Mindful observation
- Mindful awareness
- Mindful listening
- Mindful immersion
- Mindful appreciation
Let’s get started…
- Mindful Breathing – This exercise can be done standing up or sitting down, and pretty much anywhere at any time. All you have to do is be still and focus on your breath for just one minute. 1. Start by breathing in and out slowly. One breath cycle should last for approximately 6 seconds. 2. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth, letting your breath flow effortlessly in and out of your body. 3. Let go of your thoughts. Let go of things you have to do later today or pending projects that need your attention. Simply let thoughts rise and fall of their own accord and be at one with your breath. www.pocketmindfulness.com 2 4. Purposefully watch your breath, focusing your sense of awareness on its pathway as it enters your body and fills you with life. 5. Then watch with your awareness as it works work its way up and out of your mouth and its energy dissipates into the world. If you are someone who thought they’d never be able to meditate, guess what? You are half way there already! If you enjoyed one minute of this mind-calming exercise, why not try two or three?
- Mindful Observation – This exercise is simple but incredibly powerful because it helps you notice and appreciate seemingly simple elements of your environment in a more profound way. The exercise is designed to connect us with the beauty of the natural environment, something that is easily missed when we are rushing around in the car or hopping on and off trains on the way to work. 1. Choose a natural object from within your immediate environment and focus on watching it for a minute or two. This could be a flower or an insect, or even the clouds or the moon. 2. Don’t do anything except notice the thing you are looking at. Simply relax into watching for as long as your concentration allows. 3. Look at this object as if you are seeing it for the first time. 4. Visually explore every aspect of its formation, and allow yourself to be consumed by its presence. 5. Allow yourself to connect with its energy and its purpose within the natural world.
- Mindful Awareness – This exercise is designed to cultivate a heightened awareness and appreciation of simple daily tasks and the results they achieve. Think of something that happens every day more than once; something you take for granted, like opening a door, for example. www.pocketmindfulness.com 3 At the very moment you touch the doorknob to open the door, stop for a moment and be mindful of where you are, how you feel in that moment and where the door will lead you. Similarly, the moment you open your computer to start work, take a moment to appreciate the hands that enable this process and the brain that facilitates your understanding of how to use the computer. These ‘touch point’ cues don’t have to be physical ones. For example: Each time you think a negative thought, you might choose to take a moment to stop, label the thought as unhelpful and release the negativity. Or, perhaps each time you smell food, you take a moment to stop and appreciate how lucky you are to have good food to eat and share with your family and friends. Choose a touch point that resonates with you today and, instead of going through your daily motions on autopilot, take occasional moments to stop and cultivate purposeful awareness of what you are doing and the blessings these actions brings to your life.
- Mindful Listening – This exercise is designed to open your ears to sound in a non-judgmental way, and indeed to train your mind to be less swayed by the influence of past experiences and preconception. So much of what we “feel” is influenced by past experience: For example, we may dislike a song because it reminds of us of a breakup or another period of life when things felt negative. So the idea of this exercise is to listen to some music from a neutral standpoint, with a present awareness that is unhindered by preconception. Select a piece of music you have never heard before. You may have something in your own collection that you have never listened to, or you might choose to turn the radio dial until something catches your ear. 1. Close your eyes and put on your headphones. 2. Try not to get drawn into judging the music by its genre, title or artist name before it has begun. Instead, ignore any labels and neutrally allow yourself to get lost in the journey of sound for the duration of the song. www.pocketmindfulness.com 4 3. Allow yourself to explore every aspect of track. Even if the music isn’t to your liking at first, let go of your dislike and give your awareness full permission to climb inside the track and dance among the sound waves. 4. Explore the song by listening to the dynamics of each instrument. Separate each sound in your mind and analyze each one by one. 5. Hone in on the vocals: the sound of the voice, its range and tones. If there is more than one voice, separate them out as you did in step 4. The idea is to listen intently, to become fully entwined with the composition without preconception or judgment of the genre, artist, lyrics or instrumentation. Don’t think; hear.
- Mindful Immersion– The intention of this exercise is to cultivate contentment in the moment and escape the persistent striving we find ourselves caught up in on a daily basis. Rather than anxiously wanting to finish an everyday routine task in order to get on with doing something else, take that regular routine and fully experience it like never before. For example: if you are cleaning your house, pay attention to every detail of the activity. Rather than treat this as a regular chore, create an entirely new experience by noticing every aspect of your actions: Feel and become the motion when sweeping the floor, sense the muscles you use when scrubbing the dishes, develop a more efficient way of wiping the windows clean. The idea is to get creative and discover new experiences within a familiar routine task. Instead of labouring through and constantly thinking about finishing the task, become aware of every step and fully immerse yourself in the progress. Take the activity beyond a routine by aligning yourself with it physically, mentally and spiritually. Who knows, you might even enjoy the cleaning for once!
- Mindful Appreciation – In this last exercise, all you have to do is notice 5 things in your day that usually go unappreciated. These things can be objects or people; it’s up to you. Use a notepad to check off 5 by the end of the day. The point of this exercise is to simply give thanks and appreciate the seemingly insignificant things in life, the things that support our existence but rarely get a second thought amidst our desire for bigger and better things. For example: electricity powers your kettle, the postman delivers your mail, your clothes provide you warmth, your nose lets you smell the flowers in the park, your ears let you hear the birds in the tree by the bus stop, but…
- Do you know how these things/processes came to exist, or how they really work?
- Have you ever properly acknowledged how these things benefit your life and the lives of others?
- Have you ever thought about what life might be like without these things?
- Have you ever stopped to notice their finer, more intricate details?
- Have you ever sat down and thought about the relationships between these things and how together they play an interconnected role in the functioning of the earth?
Once you have identified your 5 things, make it your duty to find out everything you can about their creation and purpose to truly appreciate the way in which they support your life. For more advanced mindfulness exercises, and two 30-minute meditation music mp3s… Click here to read more about my bestselling book. Copyright © Alfred James. If you would like to reproduce this content in part or full, please contact [email protected]
Staying active during COVID
Staying active during COVID
During this unprecedented time, exercise becomes even more important to help with anxiety and stress. Let’s use exercise and physical activity to help manage any overwhelming negative emotions. We can continue to be active, despite of the pandemic with a few easy changes in our lives. Here’s Jonah, a family nurse and health basics coach from the Red Deer Primary Care Network.
Red Deer Primary Care Network (RDPCN) is a partnership between Family Doctors and Alberta Health Services. Health professionals such as psychologists, social workers, nurses and pharmacists work in clinics alongside family doctors.
In addition, programs and groups are offered at the RDPCN central location. This improves access to care, health promotion, chronic disease management and coordination of care. RDPCN is proud of the patient care offered, the effective programs it has designed and the work it does with partners in health care and the community.
Read more stories from the Red Deer Primary Care Network.
Lone Ranger and the Riders of Justice Chapter 12
GRAND CANYON SUITE
“Kemo Sabe, how many outlaws are left?” Tonto asked the Ranger during a lull in the melee.
The Masked man, standing high in Silvers stirrups surveyed the battleground quickly, his dark piercing eyes catching all the important details in their scan of the cacophony.
He turned and looked towards Tonto.
‘About twenty or twenty five Tonto, now we outnumber them!” he said enthusiastically.
Just as quickly as the battle waned, it resumed as the remaining outlaws charged once more.
Bracing themselves for the brutal onslaught, the tired ranchers formed a defensive wall. The Lone Ranger, Tonto, Monte Hale, Rex Allen, Gabby Hayes, the Harts, Tex Ritter and crew, Tim McCoy and his outriders; all lined up, their pistols still hot and smoking as they stood tall and defiant to face the bloodthirsty outlaws final surge!
The outlaws, battered, bruised and wounded stared ahead at the growing line of vengeful determined ranchers.
Fear grew within their villainous breasts as man by man, they looked to the man beside them. Left, then right, each man assessed his sideman and finally, faced front again.
By now the moon was almost mid sky, and the shadows of the ranchers were eerie dancers on the uneven beat up ground. Slowly, gun barrel reflections of white light met each outlaws gaze as they surveyed the wide line of vengeance before them.
More men joined in the ever widening swath of ranchers . Bob Nolan, Pat Brady, Dusty Rogers, and Sunset Carson had galloped up and merged with the ranchers.
The masked outlaw leader, waiting in line with the outlaws, waved the desperate men forward. Over poorly lit ground, they walked slowly at first, guns raised in preparation for a final shoot out! The masked leader walked one step behind, examining all he could see.
The Lone Ranger yelled out.
Like two columns of marching Roman centurions, the desperate groups moved towards a certain collision with destiny. A charged silence filled the air between the two approaching masses of men. The ground, trampled and torn, bore signs of recent violence, and the anger in the air screamed the promise of more!
Fear showed in every outlaws numbers as the ranchers neared. The masked leader, still walking a step behind, sensing certain defeat, yelled …
The outlaws, waiting for the sign to attack, ran forward desperately. Guns held high, each outlaw fired his brace of ammunition. Reloading, they fired again, and again.
The ranchers led by the Ranger and Roy, met the villainous onslaught with courage born of confidence. The outlaw bullets did little harm to the revenge driven cattlemen. A few fell back with slight wounds, then recovering from the hot stings, rejoined their comrades.
“GET’EM BOYS!” the Ranger shouted as he lifted his pistol, and fired, and fired.
Roy Rogers, beside the Ranger, charged into the mass of fighting men, pistols held high and blazing. All around him, rancher fought outlaw, and with one sure result; death or capture for the evil doer!
The masked leader, fighting for his life with a rancher spotted Roy out of the corner of his eye. he feigned left, then punched right felling the exhausted rancher. Roy, seeing the man fall, plunged towards the mysterious leader.
“Rogers! Come get me” he taunted.
Roy reached the hooded man, and leaping upon the outlaw leader, pulled him to the ground.
The leader, somewhat hampered by his disguise, rolled Roy off into the moist hardback.
“Give yourself up!” Roy shouted.
Roy stood up, and slipped.
The masked leader, sensing that defeat was close at hand, jumped up and mounted his horse in desperation. Taking a quick look around the melee, he reined his horse around, back again and then fled!
“Come back, you coward!” Roy shouted.
The masked leader kicked at the lunging cowboy. Missing Roy by a couple of inches, he spurred his horse onward.
Roy Rogers, ducking to avert the outlaw leaders silver tipped boot, fell onto the trampled ground again.
The masked leader galloped desperately away from the battle scene. One thought filled his mind-ESCAPE!! Pushing his mount mercilessly, he looked back and saw Roy rising from the ground dazed somewhat. Turning frontwards, he leaned down and fled for his life!
Roy Rogers, getting up from the ground looked up to see through blurry eyes. Shaking his head to clear the cobwebs, he called out.
“Here Trigger” and he whistled.
Trigger, not far away, galloped enthusiastically towards Roy. Roy, running alongside Trigger, mounted him mid gallop. He quickly reined Trigger around toward the fleeing outlaw leader.
“Come on boy, he’s got a big lead on us!” Roy shouted to Trigger.
Trigger accelerated strongly, the cool night air rushing across his face and bruising his lungs. Dust flew as his hooves beat out a tune that could only be called JUSTICE!
Roy urged Trigger on, as the outlaw ahead pushed his mount brutally. the distance between them was steadily decreasing. One hundred, ninety, eight yards… and closer.
A shot from the outlaw puffed back and went wide. A second came a little closer. Roy pulled his silver handled pistol out and took careful bead, then fired once.
By now, Roy and Trigger had closed the gap down to twenty yards.
Roy pushed Trigger onward, with the outlaw this close nothing could stop them. Triggers golden mane, waving in the rushing wind shimmered ghostly in the moonlight. Like a pair of rushing gladiators smelling victory, Roy and Trigger were transformed into avenging angels.
The outlaw leader, now scant yards away, looked back with fear in his eyes. His horse, stopped short as Trigger and Roy outran the pair briefly. Turning quickly, Roy and Trigger met the outlaw pairs attack head on.
Trigger reared up in response to the chestnuts menacing hooves. Roy, balancing on Triggers back, tensed in preparation for the final battle. Trigger struck out with his left hoof, the chestnut reeled back. Striking out in retaliation, the chestnut nicked Triggers shoulder drawing blood with a sharp shoe. Trigger, lashed out with both hooves, the other horse recoiled in fear and stepped back and down again. Trigger landed on his front hooves and attacked again and again.
Silhouetted in the moonlight, the mounted riders looked like ghosts dueling eternally over some long forgotten disagreement. Triggers mane, adopting the shimmery translucence of the silvery light, whirled as if tethered to an invisible line. Roy’s figure, against the moon, loomed mightily over the masked leaders as the horses, tired by their exertion, planted themselves firmly on the ground. The chestnut, beaten by Triggers pummeling hooves, succumbed to the golden stallion.
Roy, sensing victory for Trigger, urged him closer to the outlaw pair. Leaping from his saddle, Roy landed on the frantic outlaw leader and pulled him to the ground.
Roy, atop the masked leader, punched once, twice. The masked evildoer, arched his back and sent Roy flying through the air.
Blood dripping out of the leaders mask minimized his vision. His fear of dying drove him on! The leader ran and jumped on Roy dazing him temporarily.
Taking his pistol out of his holster he grabbed the barrel end and swung towards Roy.
Ducking to avoid the heavy pistol end, Roy swung out with his right fist. Connecting with the outlaws blood drenched chin solidly, Roy felt a snap.
The leaders head jerked back and his body followed. The masked outlaw rolled off Roy onto the ground, his pistol falling harmlessly to the side.
Roy sat up and knelt beside the stunned outlaw. He wiped his mouth with his gloved hand.
Finding his hat in the dirt, Roy picked it up and knocked the dust off. Placing it on his head, he turned and looked at the outlaw.
In the moonlight his menace was diminished, thickening blood shone black in the silvery glow. Roy stood up and rolled the masked leader over. He reached down and pulled the mask off.
The moonlight fell upon the face of Sheriff Bill Stockton!
“So, our suspicions were right” he said.
Roy walked over to Trigger, took his lasso off and tied Bill up. Wrapping the outlaw sheriff tightly, Roy threw him onto his tired chestnut. Whinnying in protest, the horse struggled with the dead weigh of the sheriff/outlaw leader.
“Come on boy. We’ll go slow” Roy said soothingly.
Breathing the cool prairie air, Roy whistled a nameless tune. Trigger, nodding in response, sauntered over beside where Roy was standing. Roy placed his left foot in the stirrup, grasped the horn, and back, then swung up into the well worn saddle.
“Let’s go Trigger, take it easy. We’ve got ourselves a tag along” Roy said as he rubbed the palominos neck.
Trigger whinnied and tossed his head from left to right.
“Don’t worry, we’ll get your cut washed out too. If you’re lucky, the vet’ll have a girl patient there too. Or we’ll get Tonto to fix you up.” Roy said to comfort Trigger.
Roy turned Trigger. The chestnut caboose followed and headed off towards Rex’s place.
As the masked outlaw leader fled from Roy, the remaining villains were battling viciously. Like trapped wolves they used every weapon at their disposal; teeth, knives, boots, even mud. The sounds of hand to hand combat intermingled with the echoes of gunfire drifted over to the ranch where Mary Sterling waited for the battle to end and peace to begin once more.
Now and then, Gabby’s voice could be heard over the lull.
“Got ya varmint” of “Drop it polecat. I’ve got you covered.”
As the outlaw numbers diminished, strength and resolve of the ranchers increased.
Twisting his head quickly y from side to side and scanning as well as he could in the moonlight, Ace’s sharp vision caught the lunar sparkle from the masked leaders disguise. Much to his surprise, the leader glanced back, kicked out at a flying Roy Rogers, then turned and galloped off!
Above the din, he yelled to the surviving outlaws.
Each man found his horse, then fled as well as he could. The ranchers, led by the Lone Ranger and Tonto, fell upon the fleeing outlaws.
“Quick men! They’re leaving!” he shouted.
Silver responded to the masked mans gentle commands- left here to cut a retreat, right to block an outlaw. Tonto found the fleeing Ace Parker and gave chase. Within a few hundred yards, Tonto and Scout overtook the villainous gunman. The Indian flung Ace to the ground, Ace’s head ricocheting off a rock. With savage fury Tonto swung once, twice, three, and out Ace Parker went. Collapsing into a heap on the ground and bleeding from half a dozen wounds, he whispered.
“You got me Indian. You got me.”
All around the melee, whoops of victory filled the air. Triumphant ranchers pulled back fleeing outlaws. Some men gathered the fallen together in a line. The outlaws, some bound, some not, all bore signs of battle weariness. and failure. The grinning ranchers, their faces battered but jubilant, slapped got down to the business of securing the prisoners.
Rex Allen found Koko, and pursued Trig Larson. Trig Larson, too scared and confused to find a horse, bolted desperately. Rex, in a couple of Koko’s strides caught up him. He lept upon the fleeing outlaw. They went down. Rex, landing squarely on Trigs back heard a crack. Trig Larson let out a yell of pain.
“Ya broke my arm Allen! I give up” he howled.
Rex Allen stepped off Larson, and lifted him up by his good arm. A surge of anger came over Rex. He wanted to beat Trig Larson within an inch of his life, but he couldn’t. They had won.
“Let’s go Larson. You walk, I ride” Rex said grimly.
Trig Larson, downcast, started back towards Rex’s place. Rex, atop Koko, held back tears of gratitude.
Somehow tonight, the deaths of his friends and fellow ranchers had been avenged, and the dead now knew.
One by one, the escaping outlaws found their retreat blocked by the inspired ranchers. The Corrigans, Haydens, Ritters and Pierce Lyden all found their targets and bore down. Some fights were quick, some long, but the prospect of peace drove the ranchers to a feverish pace. In the end, not one outlaw was left standing. Some got killed in the battle, some just got shot escaping.
“Rex” the Lone Ranger said to the exhausted ranch owner as he sauntered into the corral area, “It’s all over now.”
Rex , took his dirty hat off, and brushed his hand against the crest and sides. He put his hat back on and smiled a tired smile.
“Lone Ranger, I hope you’re right” he said, his hand on the Rangers shoulder.
The Ranger stood atop Silver and yelled.
“Men-bring the outlaws here. We’ll tie them to the fence,”
The men grumbled. One man spoke up.
“They killed my pa!”
“They killed my uncle!”
The Ranger and Tonto looked around. The men were poised to finish the night with more violence. Rex looked at the pair, concern showing on his face.
“Men, we have to hold them for the law. If we don’t, we’re not better than …”
Roy Rogers came around the corner. Reining Trigger back he dismounted and walked over to where the Ranger, Rex and Tonto stood. The flickering light evidenced Roy’s battle scars. His dungarees and shirt, were now stained brown and red.
“What took so long Roy?” Rex asked.
Roy pointed to the chestnut behind Trigger where the masked leader/Bill Stockton lay gagged and unmoving.
“He did” Roy said smiling. “But we took care of the both of them, didn’t we Trigger.”
Trigger whinnied in response to Roy’s praise.
Gene Autry and Champ rode into the circle of light with Snake Larson bound up behind on his horse.
“Wait for me boys. I want to see who is behind all of our troubles” Gene exclaimed.
The Lone Ranger motioned to Roy with his gloved hand. All eyes and ears were focused on Roy and next few words. He walked back to the burdened chestnut and grabbed the reins, then led the horse towards the fire. The air was filled with tension as Roy began to speak.
“Men. When I was first hired as special deputy at your request. I was sure that not much would happen. Then, the masked man showed up. I got ambushed. A few other things happened too. Today, we did a great thing and ended the tyranny from the gang that has held you in fear these last few months. As the Lone Ranger was about to say, the head of the outlaws is…” and Roy lifted the leaders head for all to see. He removed the mask. The flickering light revealed the features of.
“BILL STOCKTON!” Rex gasped.
Murmurs ran through the ranchers, neighbour looked at neighbour, and back again at the unconscious sheriff/outlaw leader.
“That’s what I figured. Yep, I thought he was acting might strange lately. If I was a betting man,” Gabby drawled smacking his lips.
The Lone Ranger spoke up.,
“That’s why you can’t lynch the bunch of them. If we do, we’re not better than they are” the masked man continued on. “Deputy Roy Rogers will look after the prisoners now.
Roy turned and gazed at the now subdued ranchers.
“Men. As acting sheriff of Kievers Creek” he said as the ranchers cheered. “These men are all under arrest!” Roy yelled.
“Taking a rest is more like it” Pat Brady whooped out.
Roy walked over to the wiggling sheriff, lifted him off the tired chestnut and dragged him over to the fence. Reaching into Bills shirt, he pulled the shiny badge out, and pinned it on.
“Come on boys, lets log tie these critters” Roy said as he loosened the bonds and retied the ropes around the fence post. Pulling the rope to double tighten them, he looped the lasso around one more time, then stepped aside.
Gene, standing beside Roy, tied Snake Larson up. The other ranchers tied their bounty outlaws up. Pretty soon, twenty five outlaws lined Rex’s fence.
Reverend Pat Buttram stood up.
“To celebrate this auspicious occasion, that being the capture of the outlaw gang, and a new sheriff I propose a dance in town tomorrow night.” he said in his reverend like voice.
Pat continued on.
“Let us give thanks for this evening boys. For He was with us.”
The ranchers bowed their heads in prayer.
“Precious Lord, we thank thee for they deliverance tonight. Thank you for safety, guidance, and those brave souls, who led us tonight. Amen.”
“Amen “ Gene said quietly.
Rex looked at his ranch. The moon, still shining bright lit the once neat yard, now filled with joyous ranchers. The freshly painted corral fence, boasted outlaw trophy such as never had been seen before. A sigh of relief escaped Rex’s lips. Peace was truly now back in Kievers Creek! He stepped inside, Roy, Gene, Rex, The Ranger, and Tonto were sitting in the living room. Dale had come in from town with cakes, and squares. The exhausted ranchers drank hot coffee and sampled Dales baking. Dale, along with Rex’s recently returned wife served the tired cowboys. Some snoozed in the corners, while others hungrily ate.
“Roy” Dale said.
Roy looked up from his lunch.
“Well, after you take the outlaws into town later, you’d better uh…”
Roy looked at her, signaling her to finish.
She squirmed uncomfortably.
“Take the two boys I knocked out at my place earlier today” she said.
Everyone turned around, their curiosity piqued. Roy looked surprised.
“The two boys you knocked out- how?”
Dale stood up straight.
“They were finishing their lunch around three o’clock and talking about killing you. I couldn’t let that happen Roy. I couldn’t”
“That’s mighty nice of you Dale. My alive body appreciates that.” Roy replied smiling.
Gabby, sitting in the corner piped in.
“You’re darned tooting she couldn’t Roy. She’s her fathers daughter through and through. Just like when…” Gabby sputtered.
“Gabby, you can tell me later. Would you go outside and watch our scarecrows.” Roy asked.
Gabby jumped up enthusiastically.
“Sure can Roy. Sure can.”
Pat Brady stood up and left to go out with Gabby. Tonto had been outside for a few minutes already.
“Have I ever told you about the time Pat when…” Gabby said as he and Pat went outdoors.
“So after I heard the tall one say they were going to kill the new deputy. I put the sleeping drops in their stew. “
Roy raised his eyebrows. Gene Autry laughed.
“A few minutes later, they were out. Snoring on their plates. I tied them up the way Dad taught me. Then I came here a couple of hours later.”
Roy smiled in thanks, his eyes sparkling.
“Dale, that was dangerous. But thanks again.”
The Lone Ranger spoke up.
“ Men, there is one more thing you should know. Tonto and I trailed the outlaws to a hidden box canyon some miles away.”
Gene’s eyes lit up.
“Of course. Slyes Canyon!!! It’d be the perfect hideout. Bill never took the posses there, or even close before. Of course, if he was the leader of the gang. Why would he?”
The Ranger looked at Gene.
“You’re right. He could do what ever he wanted as the lawman. Gentlemen, Tonto and I found close to a thousand cattle. Some may be the missing cattle, and you can guarantee they’re not legal property.”
“Roy, why were the outlaws so interested in running settlers off the land anyway?” Monte asked.
The Lone Ranger answered.
“Gentlemen. The railroad is coming.”
“We know masked man, known that for a while now.” Monte answered.
The Ranger nodded.
“Tonto followed Bill and Lyle up to Blindmans Plateau. Bill Stockton, Lyle, and Snake Larson overheard that the railroad man from Union Pacific could be this week.”
Gene nodded in agreement.
“With the railroad coming. Kievers Creek will join the nation officially!” Monte said enthusiastically.
The door crashed open. Gabby rushed in, his bandanna flapping .
“Roy, Lone Ranger, Gene. One of the no good for nothing owlhoots woke up. He kept on mumbling something about two hired gunnies that didn’t show up. Texas Pete and Long Gun Mike.”
“Rex , do you have a map of the territory?” the Lone Ranger asked.
“Yes I do. Let me get it” Rex answered.
Rex got up and left the room. He returned a few minutes later, map in hand. He laid it out flat on the large table. The men gathered around. The Lone Ranger pointed to Kievers Creek.
“Here is Kievers Creek. And the raids have occurred here, here, here, and here” he said, all eyes focused on the map.
Roy spoke up.
“Gene and I found the same thing out yesterday at his place. As of now the railroad is about one hundred miles away from here. In about a year, there’ll be tracks and a railroad station in town! The coming of a railroad can do wonders for a town, saw it a couple of times. There are great times ahead.”
“Well, Gentlemen. Any volunteers to help me take the outlaws into town.?” Roy asked. “And of course to go to Dales to get the two delinquent.”
The Lone Ranger, still standing beside the map volunteered.
“Tonto and I will come with you.”
“Count me in Roy. I’ll get a few of my boys too.”
Monte, and Bill Boyd volunteered too.
Roy stood up.
“You know men. I don’t think Kievers Creek has anything to worry about anymore. The Riders of Justice have made their first and final stand!” he said proudly. Pride showed in each mans face. They had been part of something big, something special.
Tonto and Pat Brady sat in the kitchen, finishing the last of the coffee and cake Dale and the ladies had made.
“Tonto. Them’s some good fixings Dale made. “ Pat said rubbing his stomach.
“Better than the Lone Rangers sponge cake. Threw that in lake, it sunk” Tonto said with a smile on his face. “Let’s take Gabby’s coffee to him. It’s our watch too.”
Tonto got up to leave, grabbing Gabby’s hot steaming coffee as he turned. Walking outside, he glanced towards the outlaw tree. Gabby was nowhere to be found.
“Help!” shouted Gabby.
The riders of justice hurried outside. Tonto and Pat Brady were leaving the kitchen after warming up. As Roy reached the injured Gabby, the sound of an escaping horseman sounded in the distance.
“That good fer nothing outlaw slugged me. I was telling the boys about the time John and I saved an entire wagon train. They went inside to get me a coffee because of my terrible thirst. And before I knew it, Bill Stockton put his arm around my neck and hit me with my own gun. Of course I fought as well as I could. Must’ve hit him at least…”
“Once” Roy offered.
“Mebbe twice” Gabby continued. “Dirty pole cat. Owww” he said touching the bump on his head. “He’s been gone five, maybe ten minutes. We’ll never catch him.”
“Are you okay Gabby?” he asked.
“I’m okay young feller. “ Gabby replied. “Where’s my coffee Monte? Do you think a little bump is gonna stop me from finishing my story? Where was I anyway?”
Miles away. ‘Bill Stockton’ stood in the moonlight. A mask, held between his fingers slipped to the ground.
“Goodbye ’Bill’” he said, a menacing tone in his voice.
Mounting his fresh horse taken from the box canyon, he took a last look back. The moon glinted off his silver tipped boots. Addressing an invisible audience he yelled.
“You’ve won the battle Ranger, but not the war!!”
He turned and spurred his horse onwards and was soon lost in the dust and the darkness.
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Attempts to close Line 5 pipeline a “threat” to consumers: Suncor CEO
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Alberta bill proposes major changes to union strike rules and funding
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Staying active during COVID
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Sentencing hearing for former Edmonton nightclub employee guilty of sex assault