The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Lyrics for Tuesday

Run for the Roses
By Dan Fogelberg

Born in the valley and raised in the trees
Of western Kentucky on wobbly knees
With Momma beside you to help you along
You'll soon be a-growin' up strong

All the long, lazy mornings in pastures of green
The sun on your withers, the wind in your mane
Could never prepare you for what lies ahead
The run for the roses so red

For it's run for the roses as fast as you can
Your fate is delivered, your moment's at hand
It's the chance of a lifetime in a lifetime of chance
And it's high time you joined in the dance

From sire to sire it's born in the blood
The fire of a mare and the strength of a stud
It's breeding and it's training and it's something unknown
That drives you and carries you home

And it's run for the roses as fast as you can
Your fate is delivered, your moment's at hand
It's the chance of a lifetime in a lifetime of chance
And it's high time you joined in the dance
It's high time you joined in the dance


That song has been stuck in my head all freakin' day since visiting Churchill Downs early in the morning and since I'm in Kentucky and my Dan Fogelberg CDs are at home with perkypaduan who hopefully has not been swept away in all the flash flooding in my county, I can't listen to it. And since I am in a hotel with a crappy phone connection to AOL -- when I get home I must look into dial-up alternatives where you can pay as you go instead of monthly -- I didn't even want to waste the online time to look up the lyrics, so I wrote them out from memory; there may be errors. (There was a time when I could write out the lyrics to every song on The Innocent Age, one of the best albums ever...maybe the best double album since The White Album.)

We made four major stops on Monday: Churchill Downs, the Louisville Zoo, Lincoln's birthplace in Hodgenville and Mammoth Cave National Park. One was more awesome than the next. We got to the racetrack just too late to watch the horses being put through their paces -- they don't race Mondays and Tuesdays -- but we took the tour of the track and museum and met the resident thoroughbred, Phantom on Tour. I have a strange and ambivalent relationship with horse racing: on the one hand, I agree with everyone who believes that animals should not be exploited in that manner, and on the other hand I find it competely thrilling and absolutely loved the 360-degree movie and all the exhibits on the champions. From Churchill Downs we went to the zoo, where we had a picnic surrounded by adult and baby geese trying to mooch food from us, then went to see what we considered to be the critical exhibits given our limited time: the African animals and gorilla exhibit, the herpetology house including the albino alligator *thinks affectionately of Viggo Mortensen* and of course the penguins, which in this case were Rockhoppers...and not entirely behind glass, so the exhibit was lovely and cool and it was possible to take photos without either blur or flashbulb glare!

The Lincoln birthplace was pretty much on the way between Louisville (dominated by its university sports teams, the Cardinals, whose logos were everywhere) and Mammoth Cave, so we stopped long enough to see the log cabin replica preserved inside a monument that resembles the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC and to walk through the visitor's center exhibits, though we didn't stay for the movie. We had reservations for a 4:30 tour at Mammoth Cave and despite crossing the timeline knew our timing would be tight. We did a walking tour of the part of the cave system with Frozen Niagara and the Drapery Room, and we also walked down to the original cave entrance -- Mammoth Cave National Park was originally two privately run, competitive entertainment complexes which the federal government did not control until the Depression, when the entrepreneur determined to find his own piece of the fortune who kept blasting into sinkholes until he found one he could purchase sold out his share. The parts of the cave I saw reminded me of Shenandoah and Luray Caverns -- it is hard to fathom that there are likely 800 miles of underground paths!

Near the "ceiling" of the Drapery Room formation in Mammoth Cave.

A section near the Frozen Niagara Falls formation.

Older son said this should be named the Prairie Dog formation; younger son said it should be named the Dalek formation.

On the outskirts of the national park, a deer, a robin and one of the old trains.

The memorial on the spot and containing a replica of the log cabin where Abraham Lincoln was born, with the reflection of the giant American flag in the glass front doors. There are 56 steps to mark each of the 56 years of his life.

The Louisville Zoo's famous albino alligator.

Your daily dose of penguins! The dirt is on the wall behind these Rockhoppers, as there is no glass in front of them.

Phantom on Tour, who finished sixth in the Kentucky Derby as a three-year-old.

And to complete my day in reverse, the Winner's Circle at Churchill Downs racetrack.

We didn't get to the grungy Quality Inn until nearly 8 local time, had a very late dinner after letting the boys take a quick swim (and believe me, if I notice the grunge, it's pretty grungy). There is no cable or wireless anywhere around, just a phone line plugged into the laptop at 2400 bps or something, so rather than run up minutes on AOL's 800 number to avoid local long distance charges I am just going to post this quickly and get offline -- will try to answer comments, tags, etc. tomorrow! Sorry, again!
Tags: trip west 06

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