Day 2 of the Longhorns and Outlaws Alberta Book Tour!

Monday, September 22, 2008, I left Drumheller for the short drive to Hanna — leaving the Dinosaur Valley I was soon watching combines rolling down the fields again as I followed Highways 56 and 9. The fall colours were glorious!

In Hanna I checked into the Super 8 Hanna Inn, which provided me with a comfy room and a great dining room just a few steps away.

Tuesday morning, September 23, 2008, I was off to the J.C. Charyk Hanna School. Everything seemed familiar, and I soon realized I’d presented a workshop for library staff there about four years earlier. Sure enough, Myrna Haines, the librarian, also remembered me.

We talked about libraries and her pending retirement while she organized her enormous library area and called down the students. Around 265 students were divided into two groups, starting with the grades 4 to 6 and finishing with grades 7 through 9.

What a lot of enthusiasm the students brought with them to my presentation! Nearly half of them were horseback riders, so could readily relate to Lucas learning how to ride his appaloosa horse. One of the boys also volunteered that he rode an ATV — which I also shared an interest with him in.

Question time opened up lots of great areas for me to discuss. The boys seemed just as interested as Lucas is, in Longhorns and Outlaws, in how the outlaws use the border to their own advantage. We talked about the different law enforcement agencies: the Pinkertons, which is what Lucas wanted to become, the sheriffs and their posses, and of course, the Mounties or North West Mounted Police.

When it came time to close, the chorus of “Where can we get the book?” was met by Myrna’s generous volunteering to collect student money over the next week and have me ship autographed books to the kids. Everyone appreciated it!


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