The long drive west is behind me … I make it 790 miles – and week one is near its end on this big guy’s excellent (so far) adventure.

The folks at the Powell Tribune and many in the community welcomed me back warmly. Even after a 15-year absence I have retained, apparently, at least some presence here in this wonderful little community on the edge of the Bighorn Basin in northwest Wyoming.

Week one began with getting moved into the first of what will ultimately be three places to sleep. This week it’s a comfy room with a bed, half-bath and a nice TV with all the great channels.

Next week and for the balance of January I will be settled into a place that has a microwave, fridge, laundry, garage and more space to drape this girthy carcass.

February and March, if I’m here that long and it sure looks like I could be, finds me living in the wonderful home of Dave and Sue Bonner. Dave was publisher and owner of the Tribune when I came to Powell the first time exactly 20 years ago.

Dave and Sue winter in Arizona so their home becomes my home at the end of this month. It will be a very nice place to hang my Scottish flat caps while I’m here.

I girded myself with steaks and a pile of those wonderful smoked ribs from Grand Central for the journey, so once I get a microwave and a grill it will be Cowboy Heaven for Ole’ Mose.

I didn’t empty the bank accounts when I left, but I kinda emptied Good Wife Norma’s freezer … can’t lie about that.

People here have been absolutely wonderful as I’ve run into them at the activities I am here to cover.

Connie Onstine is the lady who sold our home here 15 years ago, and her husband Freddie, a high school sports official during my first tour of duty for two. I watched in horror one night as Freddie headed to the other end of the basketball court, but suddenly veered sharply off his path, staggered and skidded to the floor so hard the friction burned through his clothes in a couple places.

It was a dreaded heart attack descending on a young, apparently healthy man. Freddie’s a bit older now and looks just great. Very good to see.

Eric and Wendy Robirds said hello, too. They’re the folks to whom Connie sold our Powell home. They live there still and profess to have enjoyed raising their kids there.

They are just three examples of many re-acquaintances during this homecoming week.

As for the week itself, as this is written I am halfway through the eight basketball games I will witness by late afternoon today once the Northwest College Trappers have met the Lancers of Eastern Wyoming out of Torrington.

That’s a lot of games in a single week but, what the heck, now that I’m free of wiener dog chores here’s time to burn.

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