November 27, 2013 | Volume 100 / Number 47

High Hopes For The Hi-Line

It seems the Hi-Line is a mixed box of chocolates. Our trip to Glasgow has begun with one big adventure. We started out breaking down near Big Sandy and being stranded in Havre, and have found that kindness in strangers here is much more than we ever expected.

As I have been visiting with people in Glasgow, and from the surrounding towns, I have been finding people who were originally from somewhere else and found their way up to this northeast corner of the state in Glasgow. New Jersey, New Hampshire, Iowa, Illinois, Tennessee, California, Wyoming are all places where people started out and ended up here. Whether it’s destiny or luck, I have found that most everyone is happy to be here.

Without the trains, some of this area may have never existed. What I find most interesting is the name of Glasgow. Many of the locals are of Norwegian or Swedish decent, so why name a town after a town in Scotland? I haven’t been able to dive into the history of this town thoroughly yet, but I’m excited to do so. I am also of Scottish decent. If my name, Bonnie Davidson, wasn’t a clue then I’ll tell you my grandfather came from Scotland and landed in Southern Idaho in hopes to be a cowboy. So in some ways I feel it was fate that a Scottish descendent, who grew up around plaid, Scottie dogs and bagpipes, ends up in a town that reflects all of that.

I have already begun to dive into the issues of the city and find out how the city and county government work. While some people might not find it fascinating, I always find myself wondering why more people aren’t paying attention. The Levee issue brought up at the Glasgow City Council meeting had me finding out the history of floods, how levees are built and maintained. and what needs to be done.

I also was able to visit with several employees of the city, meet with locals and visit my local Elks lodge. As an Elk member, I was pretty impressed with their facilities but shocked to find not nearly the number of active members I’m used to.

I also visited with Bernice Herman, who is going on 100 years old. I couldn’t help but agree with her on the closeness of communities being lost to technology. She reminisced of a time where neighbors actually visited neighbors and people actually talked to each other. That’s one of the reasons I have decided in my adult life to live in rural communities. I hated living in a big city, where not only did my neighbors not know me, they rarely acknowledged me.

I grew up in Idaho, just a short distance from Boise. I lived in North Dakota for a few years before the oil boom. I moved to Tacoma, Washington, and started college at a community college near Fort Lewis. I then moved Ellensburg, Washington, to finish my BA in journalism. I wanted to get a little closer to home and found myself in Weiser, Idaho, home of the National Oldtime Fiddlers’ Contest.

My experience here in Glasgow, in just one short week, has left me with high hopes for the Hi-Line. As I grow more accustomed to the area, I can’t wait to uncover the stories the people and places have to tell.

Bonnie Davids covers news for The Glasgow Courier.

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