June 16th- From a different perspective- Montana

by Tai, age 16

The sky is big and a vibrant shade of light blue. Unlike Oregon, you can see miles and miles of countryside. As the trip dragged on, the sky seemed to get clearer and more expansive. All that was to be seen were cattle, horses and the occasional car. On the two and a half hour drive from Great Falls to Browning, we passed maybe 3 cars (not including when we were in Browning). When we did encounter a car, they sped past us going at least 90 MPH, since the speed limit here in Montana is 75 MPH. But we never actually reached 75 MPH because we were driving a giant, white cinder block up the slow rolling hills.

As we arrived at the center, I admit I was nervous. I’ve never been on a volunteer trip that I can remember, so I had nothing to compare this experience to.  We arrived there a tad late so I was worried that we had missed crucial information, but it turns out we were the first ones there besides the team leader.

When everyone arrived we were given a brief tour of the building and we settled into our rooms. Nate, Ross, Ava and I were all in the same room , so about 2 hours of sleep was guaranteed each night. After everyone got unpacked, we went to dinner. We ate lasagna and played the name game to get acquainted with one another. I admit our family had a slight advantage since our volunteer group has only 13 people and our family makes up 7 of them. I felt like we were more of a team after dinner. We had “broken the ice” and we all knew each others’ names, where they lived and a few facts about them. We then ended the day with a fascinating educational movie about the Blackfeet people and the Reservation.

And by the end of the day, after seeing to the new landscape, getting settled in to my room and getting adjusted to having an even more chaotic household, I finally felt at home.

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