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A Lady in Boomtown: Miners and Manners on the Nevada Frontier - Page 93

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Then, driving the cattle ahead of us, we slowly descended into the afternoon shadows and finally joined the other cowboys on the plain. That night at dinner Mr. Sam said, “ Mrs. Brown’s got a new name for the sheep. She calls ‘ em maggots!” He spit out the word, and everybody laughed. But my remark had hit a bulls eye, and from then on knew I belonged. The last days were used to part out. Two men started into the herd, spotted a cow, nosed her and her calf toward the edge of the group, and with a sudden “ swish” flipped her out of the mass and sent her off to join the rest of the cattle bearing the same brand. Here’s where Sam Worthington’s genius showed up. When evening of the last day came, each team started away down the lane with its own herd. The spring roundup was over. The next day I took the stage home. In parting I hugged Sadie with tearful gratitude for this wonderful experience. She didn’t know it, but I knew I had reached the turning point. The encircling desert would never again close in upon me and trap my spirit in despair.



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