I have been determined to get downtown to check out the shopping scene – especially in light of my excellent frugal behavior at the Mount Rushmore gift shop.
I am not alone in my determination and soon a group of us are headed there on the shuttle.
Downtown Rapid City is a relatively intact example of a prosperous old west street with solid brick buildings, false fronts, and precise dentation.
It also has a few nice shops, including the fabulous Prairie Edge, which features high quality Lakota art of all types.
The store has an amazing collection of items both traditional and modern, including jewelry by local artists. However, despite my general rule that favors buying jewelry over other items (jewelry seems the ideal souvenir, since it is functional, easy to pack, takes little space to store, and never needs dusting), I purchase a lovely modern ledger painting by Donald Montileaux Yellowbird. I really like the piece and, as a bonus it is both small (so I may actually be able to find a place to hang it) and reminiscent of the works by Francis Yellow that I can no longer afford 🙁
We stumble upon an open-air alley art gallery. It is cheerful and witty.
Although it seems like the work of youthful artists, the references to German singer Nena’s song “99 Red Balloons” makes me suspect it is the work of someone of more advanced age! (At one point during my college years you could hear either the English or original German version approximately every 12 minutes on my favorite radio station. Yes, we timed it.)
As we search for a spot to grab a quick sandwich, thunder cuts through the dark sky. Wow! A short time ago it was hot and sunny. Now it appears we’ll be flying out this afternoon through a rainstorm.