Llamas are a staple animal in Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and other high Andes South American countries. 

Llama wool keeps locals warm and you can buy llama sweaters, caps and blankets in open markets in Otavalo, Ecuador as well as other marketplaces in the southern hemisphere. This llama,far from home, is boarded at Dave’s daughter Kim’s house in the country near Larkspur, Colorado. 

” Kathy rents them out to back packers, ” Dave once told me in one of our conversations. ” She just finished a month long backpack …..” 

Some men talk about their ex-wives with disdain. Dave was different.

This llama gives me a look of disdain and I trek back inside with the rest of the mourners.

Dave’s ashes are held in a small wood box on a living room side table,the box hidden with a shawl that has a rose coming up through a crack between the shawl and the box. A slide show on a nearby television shows high lights of Dave’s life; his marriage, the birth of his children, his life as a young man, photos of his father and mother, pictures of him smiling. Dave would be pleased with the turnout, not particularly pleased with the preacher, pleased with Kathy and Kim,and he would be back in the kitchen tasting the treats if he was still standing.

Dave was generous and I expect he would be okay with his ex lovingly sprinkling his ashes into a high mountain stream on one of her llama trips this next spring.

He would be okay with his daughter and her husband and his grand kids packing into his Airstream and going anywhere but Texas.

When I get home I’m going to dust off my boots and take a trip to Mexico, a trip we talked about for the last two years but couldn’t make because of his ill health.

When I get to Mexico I’m going to smoke a cigar for Dave even though I don’t smoke, and have a drink of Crown Royal even though I hate blended whiskey.

Dave will be pleased.


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