motherhood

This week on the podcast, Molly Bradford and I revisit her story of harvesting a doe. I figured that, it being hunting season and all, now is a good time to share our conversation.Join us as we talk about hunting, motherhood and storytelling, then listen to the story as she shared it on stage.
In this podcast episode, you’ll hear stories about a man overcoming his obesity and depression through the magic of MMA fighting, a model who escapes the insidious modeling industry, a volunteer who helps restore an historic C-47 aircraft for the commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of D-Day and a mother making a difficult decision on the day of an important hunt.

Transcript : "Tipping Point" Part 2

00:00
welcome to tell us something
00:02
[Applause]
00:11
dave bolter is a new england boy who
00:14
moved to montana
00:15
early in the spring of 1993.
00:22
he graduated from the university of
00:24
montana with a degree in forestry
00:26
specializing in recreation management
00:29
he has been making his living as a stone
00:31
mason for approximately 20 years
00:34
and is a veteran athlete and coach in
00:37
mixed martial arts
00:39
please welcome dave boulter
00:48
good evening
00:49
[Applause]
00:52
so my story begins back in new england
00:55
i was a young boy about two years old
00:58
one of my first memories of life
01:01
up to that point was going down the
01:04
mountain in between my dad’s legs skiing
01:06
and he remember him asking me dave are
01:10
you having fun
01:10
would you like to go faster and i
01:12
remember looking up yeah
01:14
you know and that that was it skiing was
01:16
my life
01:18
sports so i kept on doing all that
01:21
experimented with a variety of other
01:23
sports soccer
01:24
lacrosse cycling all that
01:29
tried every one of them out for
01:30
approximately six months before
01:32
i either loved them or i hated them
01:35
that’s when i first found out that
01:37
gnomes can’t play basketball so
01:41
i carried my little book of sports
01:43
soccer lacrosse ski racing into high
01:46
school
01:47
the ice of the east coast left me with
01:51
two knee surgeries before i graduated
01:53
high school
01:54
came out west colorado did a couple of
01:57
years there
01:58
before i moved up to montana um
02:01
uh yeah that’s what i said too i was
02:03
like what am i doing in colorado get me
02:05
to montana
02:06
so i transferred up here
02:09
was a geology major switch to wreck
02:11
management
02:13
where i started working with the
02:15
adaptive ski program at
02:18
the long lost marshall mountain
02:21
bums me out but i also that gave me a
02:24
great opportunity i was like wow this is
02:26
some really cool people to work with
02:27
adaptive skiing helping people out i get
02:30
to ski
02:32
win so i started getting close to
02:35
graduation time
02:36
east coast was calling again i found out
02:38
there’s a really good
02:40
internship program back there and a
02:42
mountain
02:43
at a tashberg peak it was right down the
02:45
road from where my grandparents live
02:47
my parents are there all my friends i
02:49
was like okay so
02:51
drove back there three weeks into that
02:53
internship i was free skiing
02:56
with a paraplegic and an amputee
03:00
when i had a freak accident destroyed my
03:02
knee
03:04
had five hours of emergency
03:06
reconstructive surgery two days later
03:09
two weeks after that those same two guys
03:12
that i was skiing with
03:14
had me skiing in a mono ski as if i was
03:16
a paraplegic my
03:18
my boss at the time was like i’m not
03:20
paying attention to this and she
03:23
avoided eye contact with me while i was
03:25
had my knee in the brace and
03:27
icing it in between runs you know with
03:29
my little cryo pack and
03:32
but i learned how to ski in a monastery
03:35
whole new experience it’s
03:36
fantastic so but i was
03:40
really missing montana that injury
03:44
caused a lot of setbacks with me i
03:46
started getting depressed i wanted to
03:48
move back to montana i couldn’t play
03:49
sports
03:50
you know skiing i could sort of do but i
03:52
was very limited no
03:53
sock or none of that so i don’t know i
03:56
was
03:56
missing montana started eating too much
04:00
and drinking beers and soda and
04:03
i don’t know i found out that i really
04:05
like to eat crappy food
04:08
but i started packing it on and i was
04:11
bummed out but i made up my mind i have
04:14
to get back to montana so i hustled back
04:16
to montana
04:17
2001 um like right after the world trade
04:22
went down i said i really need to get
04:24
out of the east coast and screw this
04:26
place so
04:27
i came back to montana um and
04:30
right i was here for about a year and
04:33
one of my good friends i was struggling
04:34
looking for a sport and soccer
04:36
nah but my buddy
04:40
suggested that i get into brazilian jiu
04:42
jitsu and i said what is that you know
04:44
and we
04:45
the ultimate fighting and ufc
04:48
and pride fighting championships out of
04:50
japan started coming in to
04:53
i don’t know popularity at that time the
04:55
early 2000s and
04:57
we would all get together and watch you
04:59
know these athletes wail on each other
05:01
and that’s kind of how i looked at it i
05:03
didn’t really see the
05:04
art of it but i agreed i was like all
05:08
right
05:08
i’ll try it you know so i got my ghee
05:11
and i went to
05:12
sakura down the road here on higgins and
05:15
i
05:15
uh yeah i found out quickly how
05:18
amazing that sport is you can really
05:21
cause a huge amount of damage to
05:23
somebody but
05:24
as soon as they tap you’re not injured
05:27
anymore
05:28
like you you can keep going you know so
05:30
i found that out but
05:31
you know through rolling i injured
05:33
myself whatever
05:36
kept training uh a little bit
05:39
off and on um still looking for a new
05:41
sport
05:42
i wasn’t really thinking that that was
05:44
my path so other friends suggested
05:47
kayaking i’m like all right i’ll try
05:48
kayaking yeah bro you’re built for it
05:50
dude and i’m like okay
05:52
so i did the frenchtown pond got my roll
05:56
did my roll in the blackfoot everything
05:58
was great
05:59
okay dave you’re totally ready for the
06:01
gorge and i’m like
06:02
uh okay and i jumped in the gorge with
06:06
my friends and
06:08
i forget which wave it was it blew me
06:10
over but
06:11
i remembered how to roll i got down
06:15
i wanted to snap my hips i got my
06:18
head up right at the last second and i
06:20
got blown over by another wave i did it
06:22
again and my shoulder popped out
06:24
i was back underwater battling couldn’t
06:27
roll anymore wet exit with a blown
06:30
shoulder
06:31
boat filled with water kicked ashore
06:34
paddle everything
06:35
all my friends were like oh you made it
06:37
good you know i was like man
06:39
kayaking you guys are crazy
06:42
i don’t know how the hell all the
06:44
respect kayakers
06:46
that’s real i was like this i’m not
06:49
getting back in that water so i threw
06:51
that kayak over my shoulder and
06:54
battled up the scree pile to the road
06:56
and i started walking back to
06:58
missoula so on the highway
07:01
truck driver thankfully stopped and
07:03
picked me up i was very thankful and
07:06
made it home returned all that gear and
07:09
sold everything else that i had bought
07:11
thinking that i would love that sport
07:12
and
07:14
anyway the struggle for new sports
07:17
continued and we kept watching all these
07:20
ufc
07:20
fights and everything and i’m like damn
07:22
what am i going to do what am i going to
07:24
do
07:24
i started getting fat again addicted to
07:27
soda i’m like oh
07:28
christ this cannot keep going on
07:31
so one day i said that’s it
07:36
quit drinking soda i’m gonna pick up
07:38
fighting
07:39
and uh and i once i quit drinking soda i
07:42
lost 15 pounds the first week
07:45
started training started training
07:48
feeling great
07:49
i told my coach i’m like dude get me a
07:52
fight
07:53
he looked at me like i was crazy but he
07:55
said all right let’s do it
07:56
so six months later i stepped in
08:00
to the ring out at rock creek lodge
08:03
july 7 2007 it was about 103 degrees
08:08
that was the second fight of the night
08:10
nerves galore i had no idea
08:13
what the hell to expect i’d never really
08:15
been in a fight before in my life i was
08:17
like
08:18
training’s one thing but an actual fight
08:21
holy you know there’s a thousand
08:23
people screaming wanting to see blood
08:24
and i’m like wow
08:27
all right let’s do this you know and my
08:30
first fight ends my buddy comes out he’s
08:32
all busted up but he won he was like oh
08:34
dude that was awesome you know and i’m
08:36
like
08:37
holy all right let’s go walking out
08:40
to the ring
08:41
it’s so hot 103 degrees i’m like what
08:44
the hell
08:45
christ scared climb into the ring
08:48
walking around the mat is black 130
08:52
degrees i’m like
08:53
wow i nervous but burn my feet if i sit
08:56
still you know so i
08:59
fight finally the bell rings boom we
09:01
start to touch gloves
09:02
and this kid from butte lit me up he
09:05
basically
09:07
he basically gassed out beating me up
09:11
i’m not gonna lie but none of the
09:14
injuries none of his hits really
09:16
got me worse than my knee explosions or
09:19
all the other things that have
09:20
happened in my life and i’m like well
09:22
hell the refs there to stop it if it
09:23
gets too crazy so let’s keep going
09:26
and uh you know the the made it through
09:29
the first round
09:30
second round i’m sitting there i don’t
09:32
even hear a word my coach is saying to
09:35
me in between rounds i’m just like holy
09:36
when is this over you know and
09:40
about he’s still giving me a beating i’m
09:43
starting to throw a beating back to him
09:45
you know i’m
09:45
feeling pretty good and then finally i
09:48
just i’m like i can’t take this anymore
09:49
this kid he’s not going to
09:51
get me down and i can’t knock him down i
09:53
finally lost it
09:55
grabbed him threw him down on the ground
09:57
and i finished him off just like ralphie
09:59
and
10:00
the christmas story beating up that
10:03
beating up that bully felt
10:05
great you know ref stops the fight
10:08
peels me off i get my hand raised i
10:11
still don’t know what the hell happened
10:12
adrenaline and everything
10:14
overheated i get craw i get brought into
10:17
the ambulance
10:18
i’m sitting there with ice packed under
10:19
my armpits my groin
10:22
throwing up in the bar pale there and
10:24
the
10:25
emts are looking at me and blood leaking
10:28
out everywhere
10:28
my buddy comes in with a couple of beers
10:31
and
10:32
i drink one down and i’m like man i can
10:34
do better than that
10:36
and uh that was the start of my 13 year
10:41
long
10:41
mixed martial arts career
11:14
thanks dave
11:15
[Music]
11:20
i feel like this is like a recurring
11:22
thing that happens with me
11:23
i keep losing my note card
11:26
every event it happens so i’m going to
11:29
use my phone
11:33
ainsley mcguire is a writer and essiest
11:36
essayist whose work appears in the
11:38
current issue
11:40
of barrel house journal and has
11:42
previously been
11:43
published in grist to houma literary
11:46
review
11:47
salon and the washington post among
11:50
others
11:52
she was recently appointed as the chair
11:54
of the parks and rec committee in the
11:56
town where she lives
11:57
she has never seen the sitcom please
11:59
welcome ainsley mcguire
12:12
when i was 16 years old i lived in the
12:15
sleepy suburbs of ottawa
12:17
canada’s capital
12:20
i was a straight a student i benchwarmed
12:23
for the basketball team
12:25
i’d never been on a date i happily wore
12:28
the same baggy jeans and gray zip up
12:30
hoodie to school
12:31
every day and the only fashion magazines
12:34
i ever flipped through
12:36
were the 17s that came to my house every
12:38
month addressed my older sister
12:41
so it came as a huge surprise to
12:42
everyone but mostly me
12:45
that after a series of events i won’t go
12:47
into now
12:48
i was scouted discovered by one of
12:51
manhattan’s top
12:52
modeling agencies the weekend before my
12:56
17th birthday i was flown to paris to
12:58
walk in my first fashion show
13:01
backstage before the show christian dior
13:04
spring summer 95 that was held in the
13:07
carousel de louvre
13:08
i sat next to models that even i had
13:10
heard of linda evangelista helena
13:12
christensen
13:13
tyra banks the champagne flowed
13:17
the camera flashes popped the show
13:19
itself was a blur
13:21
but paris was so beautiful
13:25
that’s what i told my friends and family
13:27
when i got home
13:28
and this is what i didn’t tell them that
13:31
at the fitting
13:32
the day before the show when it was my
13:34
turn to get my outfit approved
13:37
the designer an older italian man
13:39
stepped towards me
13:41
and without saying a word he ripped off
13:43
my shirt
13:45
next with his bare hands he tried to
13:48
readjust my breasts
13:50
into something that would better fit his
13:51
creation as if i were merely a block of
13:54
clay
13:55
and when it was clear this wasn’t going
13:56
to happen he just turned and walked away
13:58
from me
13:59
leaving me standing there half naked in
14:01
a room full of strangers
14:05
i rushed to find my own clothes that i
14:07
had left folded in a neat pile in the
14:08
corner somewhere
14:09
and i was stopped multiple times by
14:11
other models who said things like oh my
14:13
god the designer noticed you and
14:14
oh my god you are so lucky and as i
14:17
fought to hold back the tears welling in
14:19
my eyes
14:20
i was confused because not only was the
14:23
designer’s behavior
14:24
acceptable it was enviable
14:28
and i don’t know how i knew it but i did
14:31
know
14:32
in that moment that if i wanted to
14:34
succeed in this business
14:35
i’d need to learn how to keep my mouth
14:37
shut and of course i wanted to succeed i
14:40
was 16 years old
14:42
and i just been invited into this elite
14:43
industry i was wooed by its promise of
14:46
travel and money and fame
14:48
of escape one month after i graduated
14:52
high school when i was 17 years old
14:54
i moved to new york city unknowingly
14:57
about to embark on a career
14:58
that sells sex before i’d even had sex
15:03
for the next three years i jumped from
15:05
market to market milan paris london
15:08
hamburg new york
15:09
and at first i loved it i shot for
15:11
countless magazines i wore high-fashion
15:13
clothes on the runway
15:15
there were vip parties complete with
15:17
celebrity interactions there were free
15:19
dinners free drinks
15:20
and yet when i was 20 i couldn’t keep up
15:22
with the pressures inherent in the
15:24
industry anymore like
15:26
the imposed thinness and the constant
15:28
relocation
15:30
before the internet living abroad was an
15:32
extremely isolating experience
15:35
which only compounded my feelings of
15:37
depression
15:38
and again i was confused because here i
15:40
was surrounded by all these things
15:42
you’re supposed to want
15:43
to have here i was surrounded by people
15:45
constantly telling me how
15:47
lucky i was and yet i didn’t feel that
15:50
way
15:51
fortunately my parents insisted i go
15:53
back to school which i did and i got a
15:55
degree in psychology
15:56
but the spring before i graduated i was
15:58
scouted to model again
16:00
and i figured that modeling could be a
16:01
great way to make some money in the
16:02
short term
16:04
i mean i possessed the skill set and i
16:07
figured that i was strong enough to
16:08
handle anything
16:09
the industry threw out me this time
16:11
around i was sucked back in
16:15
in the fall of 2012 i was 35 years old
16:18
living in new york and my job still was
16:21
model
16:22
and though the nature of the bookings
16:24
had changed over the course of my career
16:26
from magazine covers and campaigns to
16:29
what
16:29
those in the industry referred to as the
16:32
closet
16:33
i spent days sitting in a windowless
16:36
room sometimes as small as four by ten
16:38
feet
16:38
sometimes bigger sometimes alone and
16:41
sometimes with other models
16:42
and i’d wait until somebody brought me
16:45
an outfit or
16:46
100 to try on and model for the buyers
16:49
from upscale department stores
16:51
and boutiques in the adjacent showroom
16:55
now there are many times over the course
16:56
of my career when i probably should have
16:58
considered quitting
17:00
like that first fashion show for example
17:03
or when i was 19
17:04
and an agent invited me into his office
17:06
and told me to not eat anything for the
17:08
next two days
17:09
and over the next two weeks to really
17:11
watch what i ate but
17:12
drink a lot of water or when i was 25
17:15
and my agent suggested that i never tell
17:17
anyone i had a university degree
17:20
because it might make people feel bad
17:21
about themselves
17:23
or when i was 31 or when i was 31
17:28
and a designer spit in my face on set at
17:30
a photo shoot because
17:32
he decided he didn’t like me
17:35
and while all of those instances and
17:37
others made me
17:38
feel less than worthless more than
17:41
worthless
17:43
i never said anything because i had
17:44
learned from the start that to speak up
17:46
meant to be difficult
17:47
and to be difficult meant to be
17:48
overlooked for jobs jobs that sometimes
17:50
came
17:51
with a huge paycheck
17:54
and that’s the thing about modeling the
17:57
money isn’t always there
17:58
but the promise of money is
18:01
which is how i lasted in the business as
18:04
long as i did
18:05
that and as time passed i came to
18:06
believe i wasn’t capable of doing
18:08
anything else
18:10
on a monday afternoon in november 2012
18:13
as i stood out in the showroom
18:14
modeling my next outfit one of the
18:17
buyers looked me in the eye
18:18
an older man and he said that shirt
18:21
makes your belly look
18:22
big that wasn’t a big deal i was
18:26
so used to comments like that comments
18:27
dissecting my appearance and telling me
18:29
what was wrong with me to my face
18:32
i was numb to comments like that what
18:34
made this time so
18:36
special was that he said it to me as i
18:38
stood next to a model who had just
18:40
announced in the closet that she was
18:41
pregnant
18:42
five months along she hadn’t told the
18:46
client
18:46
yet and i got this because she like the
18:48
rest of us was hired for her exact
18:50
measurements
18:51
and to deviate even a centimeter meant
18:53
to possibly lose her job
18:56
so in cahoots with the dresser the woman
18:58
whose job it was to
19:00
help us get dressed uh the pregnant
19:02
model ensured that all
19:04
of the baggier clothes went to her
19:06
leaving me with all the form-fitting
19:08
ones
19:10
when i got home at the end of the day my
19:12
booker called ainsley
19:14
are you on your period yes i said
19:18
i lied oh good i assured the client that
19:20
must be the case but they still ask that
19:22
you don’t come back to work this week
19:26
now it’s important to note here that at
19:27
this time i was in my second year of
19:29
grad school getting an mfa in creative
19:31
writing
19:32
but i’m ashamed to say that up until
19:34
three years earlier i hadn’t even known
19:36
that an mfa in creative writing was a
19:37
thing
19:38
i had been so sheltered by this industry
19:41
i had remained so amenable to it
19:44
but i had gravitated towards writing
19:46
because i had amassed so many stories
19:48
and i wanted to learn the best way to
19:50
tell them but i still didn’t know what i
19:52
was going to do once my career ended i
19:54
mean it’s not like anyone in the
19:55
industry cares to help you figure out
19:57
what’s next you’re valuable to them
19:59
until you just aren’t
20:00
so it was as if i existed every day
20:02
living on a conveyor belt
20:03
a lineup of hungry women behind me
20:06
thinner younger
20:07
prettier versions of myself ready to
20:09
knock me off
20:10
at any moment and into the oblivion of
20:12
old age
20:15
when i hung up the phone with my booker
20:16
i started to cry
20:18
and i knew in that moment something
20:20
needed to change
20:23
a year and a half later my then
20:24
boyfriend and i left new york city and
20:26
moved to southeast idaho
20:28
of all places and into the house
20:33
and into the house that his
20:34
great-great-grandparents built in 1914
20:37
i’d never lived i’d never been to idaho
20:40
before but i’ve lived in many places and
20:42
i reasoned you can build a life anywhere
20:44
which is exactly what we’ve done over
20:45
the past five and a half years
20:47
and it hasn’t always been easy i’ve
20:49
worked so many odd jobs i was a
20:51
community counselor for a while
20:53
i was a substitute high school teacher
20:55
for three days
20:57
i did it wasn’t for me i
21:00
i do copy editing for a home healthcare
21:03
company i even worked in a retail
21:04
clothing store for a while
21:07
and with each of those jobs i was lucky
21:09
to get paid in two weeks what i used to
21:11
earn
21:11
in a day sometimes even an hour as a
21:13
model
21:15
and yeah that was tough to take at first
21:18
but now i can honestly say that even
21:21
though i have far
21:22
less i have never felt luckier
21:31
[Applause]
21:32
[Music]
21:36
that boyfriend became my husband we look
21:38
after each other our home and a dozen
21:40
animals
21:43
i have a garden i finally understand the
21:46
value of a hard-earned dollar
21:48
and i finally understand that my worth
21:50
as a human comes from more than being a
21:51
desirable object
21:58
and it wasn’t until i left the industry
22:02
that i understood the extent of the
22:05
psychological damage that had been
22:06
inflicted
22:08
this industry that had socialized me
22:11
this industry that had treated me the
22:12
same at 36 as it had at 16
22:15
and i was the ideal candidate i’m
22:17
ashamed to say i was an eager
22:19
malleable teenager willing to do
22:21
whatever it took in order to succeed
22:23
which is exactly what the industry is
22:25
counting on
22:26
but i’m more ashamed that i didn’t speak
22:28
up when i saw these things
22:30
that made me feel uncomfortable
22:34
and the things that i knew were wrong
22:37
in january i’m about to start a new job
22:39
i was recently hired by the college of
22:41
eastern idaho to create and teach
22:43
their first creative writing class for
22:45
credit taught on campus
22:48
and i can’t wait
22:50
[Applause]
22:53
i can’t wait to help my students
22:55
discover and develop their voices
22:58
but more than that i can’t wait to watch
23:00
as they discover
23:01
the transformative power that can come
23:03
from finally using them
23:05
thank you
23:08
[Applause]
23:14
[Music]
23:36
thank you ainsley
23:47
and thank you to everyone who is
23:48
actively listening
23:59
people who interrupt that’s not okay
24:07
[Applause]
24:09
think of it like this if you’re
24:10
conflicted it’s not consensual
24:21
john haynes was born and raised in
24:23
plains montana
24:24
[Music]
24:27
he lived in kumato japan for 10 years
24:31
john
24:32
currently works at ace hardware so he
24:34
can volunteer
24:35
at the museum of mountain flying
24:39
please note for the sake of clarity
24:42
the miss montana in the following story
24:44
is stunningly beautiful
24:47
she’s a 75 year old airplane please
24:50
welcome
24:51
john haynes
25:04
i am the volunteer coordinator out at
25:06
the museum of mountain flying
25:10
[Applause]
25:11
but it hasn’t always been that way on
25:14
january 3rd
25:15
of this year was my first day
25:17
volunteering at the museum
25:20
i opened up the door and i saw a 75 year
25:23
old dc3
25:25
well a nearly 75 year old dc3
25:28
it first came off the assembly line with
25:30
the purpose of hauling people on cargo
25:33
during world war ii it didn’t see
25:35
service beyond the american borders
25:37
but it would have a great life ahead of
25:40
it
25:48
johnson flying service bought it as a
25:50
surf surplus plane
25:52
in 1946 and used it for smoke jumping
25:55
and and hauling cargo all over the
25:57
region in
25:58
uh very rural areas
26:02
what i saw on that night was that we had
26:04
a goal of getting it
26:06
to fly by march which was interesting
26:09
because
26:10
it had no engines on it
26:13
the the interior was taken apart
26:16
and waiting for modern amenities like
26:20
good insulation and avionics to be
26:22
installed
26:23
there is no operational avion
26:26
or controls for the the flight it was
26:29
basically a shell of the plane that it
26:31
was about to become
26:33
with that in mind my first job there was
26:36
to build
26:37
shelves for the red shed in the museum
26:40
and i thought well
26:41
that’s not too sexy
26:43
[Laughter]
26:46
but when i came back later a lot of the
26:48
tools and paperwork that were screwing
26:50
across the floor when i got there were
26:52
in the shed and organized and you soon
26:54
realized
26:55
that it doesn’t matter what job you are
26:57
doing
26:58
it is all important for the big picture
27:01
my second job that i can remember doing
27:03
was getting onto one of those scissor
27:05
lifts and going up
27:06
into the nose of the plane with it in
27:09
mind
27:10
to take some of the hoses out that were
27:12
connected to the
27:13
the back of the dashboard that measured
27:15
things like fuel and oil
27:17
and i was supposed to put the labels
27:19
that were written on the hoses
27:21
onto the ports that they’re connected to
27:24
which became
27:25
interesting fast because i saw two or
27:28
three labels that said the exact same
27:30
thing
27:31
left engine fuel possibly oil
27:39
well february and march came
27:43
and went and we had a lot of progress
27:45
but
27:47
the plane hadn’t flown in about
27:51
sometime in april our lead mechanics
27:53
parents showed up from arizona and they
27:55
drove up in their rv
27:56
and were they intended on staying for
27:58
about two weeks
28:01
bill is one of those people that’s a
28:02
good example of the type of volunteers
28:04
we had out there he’s 70
28:06
plus years old and a dynamo he could be
28:09
everywhere at once
28:10
and working on just about anything on
28:12
the plane and feel very comfortable with
28:14
it
28:15
and he would tell you a good story the
28:17
whole time
28:19
his wife age and some health issues had
28:23
caught up with her
28:24
so what would happen in the afternoon is
28:27
she would need a break
28:28
and go back to their rv and stay there a
28:32
while
28:32
and when she wanted to come back she’d
28:35
honk the horn
28:36
and and bill would scurry off and wash
28:39
all the oil products off his hands
28:41
and bring her back out to to help us out
28:45
after a few rounds of the honk honk one
28:48
of our volunteers said
28:49
that’s love a few days
28:52
after that it happened we’d hear hong
28:55
kong and a chorus of
28:56
that’s love
29:01
april again a lot of progress
29:04
but it was not or miss montana was not
29:07
airborne yet
29:09
but we’re getting more and more
29:10
confident as time went on
29:12
in the first week of may now keep in
29:15
mind we’re having our send-off gala for
29:17
a plane that hadn’t flown on the weekend
29:19
of mother’s day
29:21
on the saturday before mother’s day in
29:23
the first week of may
29:25
we realized if we’re going to practice
29:28
our jump for the normandy
29:30
ceremony we needed a drop zone
29:34
in and i saw that as an opportunity
29:37
to pitch plains montana my hometown
29:42
it’s about an hour and a half drive but
29:44
a 20-minute flight so it was perfect
29:46
um now al charters who was our jump
29:50
master and i
29:50
drove up to planes and al got about a 10
29:53
minutes
29:54
noticed for this plan so he showed up to
29:56
the hangar and he said
29:57
al we’re going up to planes to find a
29:59
drop zone
30:01
mind you al isn’t very tall in stature
30:05
but he can fill up a room with his
30:08
self-confidence
30:09
and sense of purpose and i was a little
30:12
intimidated by it
30:13
um but i i was willing to take the risk
30:17
i’m back so
30:21
we drove up to planes and we talked to
30:23
the person who manages
30:24
the airport up there and we went out to
30:27
visit the airport
30:29
and and al looks around
30:32
and he says
30:36
it would work on a perfect day
30:40
and i think we both knew that a perfect
30:43
day is tough to plan
30:44
for so we drove back and talked to the
30:47
manager at the airport who is in
30:49
in high gear for lobbying for this
30:51
because he he wanted
30:52
an event like this to happen in little
30:54
old plains montana
30:56
and we said well maybe and i had the
31:00
idea of calling the people who owned the
31:01
holland ranch
31:02
just west of town the
31:06
so i called up daisy holland and i said
31:09
daisy
31:10
have you heard about the miss montana
31:12
project
31:13
and she said well yes i have i said
31:17
you know we need a drop zone for our
31:20
practice jump and we’d like to use your
31:22
field just west of town
31:23
i said well sure so basically
31:27
we had two 30-second conversations to
31:29
get yes so the support was there
31:31
and it was it was a really neat thing we
31:34
ended up meeting with daisy
31:36
and the manager of the airport and we
31:39
we got everything confirmed but we did
31:42
not know
31:43
what day this would end up happening so
31:45
we said we have to keep this a secret
31:48
for any of you who have ever been to a
31:50
small town the best way to promote
31:52
something
31:53
is to tell people to keep it a secret
32:00
so that was the first week in may we had
32:03
our send off gala
32:04
without the plane flying on a saturday
32:06
night and we
32:07
partied like it was gonna happen let me
32:09
tell you it was it was a really fun
32:11
event
32:12
that next sunday was mother’s day and
32:15
my mom is in the audience i’d like to
32:17
say thank you for allowing me to skip
32:19
mother’s day this year
32:21
because miss montana flew and i
32:25
got the techs at work and i took off
32:27
from work and i showed up to the airport
32:29
and for once i was happy that miss
32:31
montana hadn’t flown yet
32:33
we there was about 60 of us out there
32:36
and a lot of us were the long-term
32:39
volunteers there that that had put
32:43
some of us were working 40 hours a day
32:45
and volunteering 30 or 40 hours on top
32:47
of that and it was absolutely fun i
32:48
wouldn’t trade it for
32:50
anything and that evening
32:53
the plane took off and took its first
32:55
flight
32:56
in over 18 years and made it around the
32:59
valley of missoula
33:01
we were so excited it landed and for a
33:03
lot of us
33:04
there may not have been a dry eye and
33:07
you could blame it on the on the
33:09
springtime allergies
33:10
or maybe the cool breeze that was
33:13
blowing but i’d like to think
33:15
it was all that perseverance and
33:17
patience
33:18
and hard work and hong kong that’s love
33:28
that next day was a monday and they
33:31
still needed to get some flight time so
33:33
they took a practice flight up to
33:35
through my hometown the valley of plains
33:38
up to kalispell and back to missoula
33:39
without too much incident at least that
33:41
they’ll talk about
33:43
and that night i had driven up to planes
33:47
and we made it official we were going to
33:49
do our practice jump in planes and
33:52
i it was like christmas eve i was so
33:54
excited i could barely
33:56
sleep so i had contacted
33:59
a friend at the plain school system and
34:02
they had let the entire school
34:04
out to watch this happen and they got
34:07
onto the football field
34:08
at 8 30 and guess what we weren’t going
34:12
to show up on time
34:18
the plane had was going to fly
34:21
east to west so it flew over the entire
34:23
town
34:25
right over the school and it was also
34:27
conveniently located the flight path
34:29
right between the hospital and the
34:32
cemetery
34:33
thankfully we didn’t need to use either
34:35
one of those
34:39
the the plane was coming and and we were
34:43
able to track it on flight tracker but
34:44
the folks at the school didn’t know and
34:46
some of the kids and teachers were
34:47
getting a little impatient so they
34:48
started to walk back into the school
34:50
especially the younger ones and a friend
34:52
of mine texted me well where’s the plane
34:55
and i said i gave it a few seconds
34:56
because i knew it was probably
34:58
between quinn’s hot springs and paradise
35:00
and i said
35:01
listen and as that plane
35:05
came into the valley you can hear those
35:07
two 1200 horsepower pratt and whitney’s
35:10
and it’s a two-for-one deal
35:12
you feel it in both your heart and your
35:14
soul
35:16
and it came over town and did a loop and
35:19
came back out
35:20
and the first for the jump and the first
35:23
people
35:24
to come out of the plane were kim
35:25
maynard and amanda
35:27
holt kim happens to be one of the first
35:30
female smoke jumpers
35:31
ever and it was
35:36
damn straight
35:40
so she came out and landed and
35:43
everything went off beautifully and we
35:44
made a few more passes because
35:46
there was several jumpers involved and
35:50
by the end of it we all gathered
35:53
together and that people were actually
35:55
spread out and it took a while to get us
35:57
together
35:57
and a recently retired smoke jumper who
36:00
lived in plains
36:01
had brought vintage 1990 smoke jumper
36:04
beer for this special occasion
36:08
they say beer goes bad but boy it tasted
36:10
good at 11 o’clock in the morning
36:14
we’re the beer bottles were clanking and
36:16
we were
36:17
absolutely ecstatic that all systems
36:19
were a go for mechanically and with the
36:21
jumpers
36:22
and we came to realize right there
36:25
that we went from knowing that we could
36:28
do this
36:29
to actually proving it and miss montana
36:35
flew about 10 days later and left for
36:39
normandy
36:40
and believe it or not it left missoula
36:43
with
36:44
less than six or seven flight hours
36:47
and it made it to the east coast without
36:49
an incident and it took
36:50
the blue spruce route back to europe so
36:53
it went
36:54
connecticut maine up into canada and
36:57
newfoundland
36:58
and a few places in greenland that i
37:00
cannot pronounce
37:01
reykjavik iceland scotland and down to
37:04
england where they were staging for the
37:05
ceremonies for normandy
37:09
when it was all said and done and they
37:11
made it back to montana there was only
37:12
one minor mechanical issue that was
37:14
easily taken care of
37:16
if you ask me i didn’t do the work
37:21
um and it was absolutely amazing it was
37:23
only the start
37:24
throughout the summer we were involved
37:26
with quite a few events
37:28
and one of them was to help commemorate
37:31
the man gold’s tragedy that 12 smoke
37:33
jumpers and a firefighter passed away in
37:35
near helena
37:36
and it was very moving it happened to be
37:38
the 70th anniversary of that
37:40
and another one was toward the end
37:44
in september we were able to go to
37:46
florida and the bahamas
37:48
to do what the plane was built for and
37:49
help out the folks the folks that were
37:51
very
37:52
in had a tough time due to hurricane
37:55
dorian we were flying 20
37:57
000 meals a day and it was hot barbecue
37:59
stuff i’ve never been in a plane that
38:01
smelled so good
38:05
thank you so much and honestly the miss
38:07
montana project could not have happened
38:09
without the support of so many people it
38:11
was absolutely incredible
38:12
thank you
38:28
microphone must have fell down i don’t
38:30
know
38:34
thank you john
38:42
we have one more storyteller before i
38:45
introduce her
38:47
let me remind you about the next tell us
38:49
something event on march 25th
38:51
the theme is lost and found we are
38:54
taking story pitches for that right now
38:56
go to telesumming.org and click
38:58
tell a story to learn how to pitch your
39:00
story
39:01
all right let’s bring this home are you
39:02
ready
39:05
[Music]
39:05
[Applause]
39:08
molly bradford is the ceo and co-founder
39:11
at
39:11
gather board the makers of missoula
39:14
events.net
39:18
molly takes community connection
39:20
seriously as an active member of the
39:22
missoula startup ecosystem
39:24
in addition to her children’s scholastic
39:27
and community
39:28
endeavors molly is an avid
39:31
yet amateur gardener cook skier
39:34
and hunter who likes to put up mass
39:37
quantities of food for the winter
39:40
she’s a good friend to have
39:43
she likes to race her husband and kids
39:45
down the slopes
39:47
and makes telecommuting from mexico a
39:49
priority
39:50
please welcome molly bradford
40:03
six years ago i shot a doe on opening
40:06
day
40:07
just a moment before that i was leaning
40:09
into the wet sandy bank
40:11
with detailed certainty that a large
40:14
herd was going to
40:15
exit the forest and come into the field
40:18
at about sunset
40:19
i knew that there were at least three or
40:21
four monster bucks
40:23
in the herd i looked up and the sun
40:27
was about 15 minutes from setting over
40:29
the bitterroot mountains
40:30
which meant there were only 45 minutes
40:33
of hunting hours left
40:35
and my pocket vibrated
40:38
it was a text from my husband spencer
40:41
william
40:41
has been crying off and on for a couple
40:44
hours and he won’t take a bottle
40:46
how’s the hunt going
40:51
the hunt was going great until then
41:02
although my breast pump lay a couple
41:04
hundred yards away in the truck and i
41:06
was engorged under my camo
41:09
i thought to myself am i gonna call off
41:12
this hunt for the second
41:13
time today you see much earlier that
41:16
morning i had woken up before my
41:18
alarm in a state of shock wondering why
41:21
there was an
41:21
amplified baby seal barking in the next
41:24
room
41:25
but it was not a seal it was my baby my
41:28
son
41:29
he was actually struggling to breathe
41:32
and coughing with what would be his
41:34
first of nearly 20
41:36
bouts of croup i rushed to william’s
41:39
crib
41:39
and picked him up and luckily i was able
41:41
to pretty quickly stabilize his
41:43
breathing
41:44
and then the dread set in today was my
41:47
day to go
41:48
hunting it’s opening day i needed a day
41:52
off
41:52
and this hunt was a gift a friend of
41:55
mine with a farm south of hamilton had
41:57
offered me
41:58
an opening day mother’s hunt it was like
42:01
a sure thing
42:02
going to the going to go hunting for for
42:05
venison at the grocery store almost
42:08
and i thought to myself do i go on the
42:11
hunt do i cancel
42:13
is it fair to deprive myself of a day
42:16
off is it fair to leave my sick child
42:18
with my husband and daughter
42:19
do i cancel on taylor taylor and
42:22
meredith had taught me to hunt
42:24
a few years before that i primarily
42:27
hunted with other women and mothers
42:29
we had a long-standing relationship with
42:31
our produce
42:33
growing fruits and vegetables trading
42:35
them putting them up for the winter
42:36
it was a large group of women who wanted
42:39
a similar relationship with their meat
42:41
that they had with their produce so
42:44
spencer and i decided if william was
42:46
doing better
42:47
during the day and the hunt could be
42:49
postponed until the afternoon
42:51
that was a good alternative and so
42:54
here i was leaned in on the sandy bank
42:57
and i knew that the hunt was on
43:00
just a little while before i’d found my
43:02
position i had walked over
43:04
a well-trodden game trail with fresh
43:07
hoof prints in the sand
43:08
and droppings and tons of sign
43:12
of deer the hair was standing up on the
43:15
back of my neck
43:17
i was paying attention to the forest and
43:19
i knew i was in the right place
43:22
you see i take the decision to bring
43:25
life into the world
43:27
and the decision to take life from the
43:29
world pretty seriously
43:31
i had done a lot to prepare for this
43:33
hunt
43:34
sighted in my gun nearly perfectly at
43:36
100 yards
43:37
sourced local non-lead ammo i had on
43:41
camo
43:41
hunter orange a backpack a finely
43:44
sharpened
43:46
field dressing kit proper nutrition
43:49
and as i sat there thinking about all
43:52
this i realized that the forest was
43:54
quiet
43:55
the squirrels were no longer chattering
43:57
in the background giving up my position
43:59
in the forest
44:00
i could hear the wings of the raven
44:05
overhead before i even saw it reminding
44:08
me of the sound of breath
44:10
while giving birth
44:15
and then the deer appeared like they
44:18
sometimes do
44:19
a young spike buck ran out into the
44:22
field a scout
44:24
a couple fawns and does after that
44:28
a larger buck and larger does i knew
44:31
that this was not one of the trophies
44:33
but this hunt was not about antlers it
44:36
was about meat
44:37
so i sight i leaned into my gun and put
44:40
the scope
44:41
on one of the does just behind her front
44:44
leg where i knew the heart would be
44:47
and i calmed myself down so that it
44:49
wasn’t shaking before i took my shot
44:55
those deep breaths before the final push
44:58
that brings life into the world and the
45:01
pull
45:02
that takes it i shot that doe
45:05
on opening day and it was a great shot
45:08
on all accounts
45:09
i would find out later that i had shot
45:11
it through the heart
45:13
it jumped back a few yards and fell down
45:15
at the edge of the forest
45:16
the rest of the herd scattered i took my
45:19
time
45:20
calming down for a moment in that sandy
45:21
bank then i texted spencer and taylor
45:24
and the landowner to let them know what
45:25
was going on
45:27
and i approached the animal she had died
45:29
almost immediately
45:31
i slipped some grass into her mouth and
45:33
put my hand on her neck to thank her
45:34
for her sacrifice for my family and got
45:37
to work
45:38
laying out my plastic bag for the heart
45:40
to take home to eb
45:42
my field dressing kit no headlamp
45:46
it was supposed to be a morning hunt and
45:48
i’d forgotten my headlamp
45:50
and in my sleep deprived state no gloves
45:54
i had tons of baby wipes but no gloves
45:58
so i grabbed my knife with my bare hands
46:01
and started the incision down the
46:03
breastbone and through
46:04
the abdomen of the deer when i came to a
46:06
swollen
46:08
set of teats and i had to keep going
46:12
i sliced through and the milk spilled
46:14
into the incision
46:15
on my hands and my own milk spilled out
46:18
of my breasts and into my camo
46:21
taylor came up and she quickly talked me
46:24
down
46:25
off of what was about to be a bad
46:27
adrenaline trip
46:28
she starts she steadied the dough
46:32
and she studied me she told me i had to
46:35
get to work
46:35
it was getting dark quickly we had no
46:38
light and we were getting cold
46:40
i hastily and sloppily finished field
46:42
dressing the dough
46:44
i put the heart in a bag to bring home
46:48
while taylor found a stick to spread the
46:50
ribs apart
46:51
to help it cool off more quickly i
46:53
cleaned up my hands and packed my bag
46:56
we drugged the animal tired in the dark
46:59
with no light
46:59
stumbling around in the field back to
47:01
the truck convincing ourselves that
47:03
another doe would nurse that fawn
47:05
tonight
47:06
and threw it in the back of the truck
47:08
saying goodbye and thanks
47:10
to the farmer on our way out i dropped
47:13
taylor at her mom’s about halfway home
47:15
where we ran into some other friends
47:16
who’d been fishing that day
47:18
we swapped stories of success there were
47:20
high fives and cheers but i was pretty
47:22
sad they all tried to convince me again
47:25
that the fawn would be okay i got home
47:28
to a relatively quiet house
47:31
william was eager to nurse and we
47:34
drifted off into fit full sleep
47:36
the next morning eb bounded outside in
47:39
her pajamas and jumped right up into the
47:41
back of the truck with the dough
47:43
she was so excited to check it out did
47:45
you bring me the heart mama
47:47
i did we cut the back strap out of the
47:50
back of the dough to have later for
47:51
dinner and went inside
47:53
where she played with it in the sink
47:54
squeezing water in and out of the
47:56
different valves and putting her finger
47:58
through the bullet hole
47:59
that afternoon i took the dough and
48:02
william to the butcher
48:03
some years i have the bandwidth to do my
48:06
own butchering but this was not one of
48:07
those years
48:09
the butcher was so excited to see me in
48:12
fact he was about to do an interview
48:13
with the local news station about the
48:15
success of his female hunters on opening
48:17
day
48:18
as he told me his words not mine they
48:21
hunt with more finesse
48:22
and less ego he asked how my hunt had
48:26
gone
48:27
i told as i started to tell him his lead
48:30
processor came out from the back
48:32
hunched over with gnarled hands and
48:34
blood on his apron and a hollow wrinkled
48:37
face
48:38
and i told them about the fawn and the
48:40
dough and william and the milk and
48:42
i started to tear up and the hunchback
48:45
leaned over and he put his
48:47
hand on my shoulder and he said it’s
48:50
okay mama
48:51
you’ve done nothing wrong you’ve
48:53
harvested a fine
48:55
animal for your family
48:58
that fawn needed to wean so it could
49:00
survive the winter
49:02
and with that my suffering lifted
49:06
i loaded the baby into the truck and
49:08
headed home
49:10
that evening as i sat in our
49:12
hundred-year-old kitchen
49:13
nursing william watching my husband cook
49:16
fresh backstrap for dinner
49:18
and my daughter eager to help prepare
49:20
the heart for fritters
49:22
i was soothed by the rhythm
49:26
of the push and the pull thank you
49:29
[Applause]
49:36
[Music]
49:44
[Applause]
49:44
[Music]
50:06
[Music]
50:10
so
50:15
[Music]
50:23
you