A Yellowstone Tale

My friend Justin Johnson and his faithful sidekick Nikki are currently touring Yellowstone National Park. Looking at some of their posted photos on Facebook brought back memories of the trip we took back in the early 1990s.

justin & nikki at falls
Justin & Nikki

Yellowstone being such a special place we decided to invest in a small video camera to record the experience. So, on the way we stopped at Circuit City in Cincinnati and spent close to $1000 on a camera and a couple of spare tapes. Our son sat in the back of our van and  learned the art of video photography as we plowed our way west.

He recorded our crossing the Mississippi, driving across Southern South Dakota, getting towed into a small town for a new starter on the van, Wall Drug Store, the Bad Lands, Mount Rushmore, Deadwood, Devil’s Tower in WY, and our first day in Yellowstone.

While we were looking over the vista at the Falls of the Yellowstone River the tape finally filled up. Mike ran back to the van for a new tape which turned out to not work. The second trip to the van resulted in a good tape and the video record of our trip continued.

Since these tapes were expensive  I decided to return it to Circuit City when we came back through on the drive home. I parked outside and took the bad tape to the return desk where they gladly accepted it and issued a new replacement.

Next day the rest of the family came out to watch our videos. We got everything set up, the popcorn popped, and voilà, the tape of the entire first half of the trip was not to be found. Instead we had an opened blank tape that didn’t work. If you’ve guessed I had exchanged our precious “first half” tape for a new blank tape you’re correct.

On some off-chance I called Circuit City and was told they tossed returned tapes at the end of the day and finding mine would be impossible.

I’m not sure what lesson is to be learned here but it’s got to be related to measure twice, cut once.

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