A celebration of Life is an understatement on this unforgettable journey to a remote corner of Nevada beneath endless skies with 23 incredible women and over 500 wild Mustang horses roaming free in the distance.
It was a full on LoveFest. Well… not right away! The Magic of Mustang Monument, a long 2 and 1/2 hour drive in our comfy stretch hummer, a far cry from our predecessors who came on horseback and covered wagon, from Salt Lake City was an acquired taste from the moment we arrived on this untamed frontier as we
became more and more comfortable on our “home on the range”. Yes, it was out of the box for all of us especially when we heard we would have no cell or internet service. We were off the grid and I must say it was very refreshing. A perfect STAT scenario. Everyone was present without the need to check our devices. The resort (yes i would call it that) is intimate and like no other for sure. It is owned and operated by animal activist and philanthropist Madeleine Pickens who sadly couldn’t be there to greet us but as i heard later that may have been a blessing in disguise. Evidently, she doesn’t like guests getting crazy and dancing on tables. Hmmm…not us. We did have our prerequisite cowboys Tommy and Tucker and our token navy seal Niks on hand to make sure we didn’t get “out of hand”. Our days began and ended appropriately at the saloon where in the mornings it was turned into a yoga studio where we practiced our asanas that opened our hearts.
During the evenings…it was a different story. But the biggest out of the box experience for most of us was sleeping in these hand-painted perfectly appointed Tepees without electricity and a short walk to the bathroom. After all, this was the Wild West! And our Nancy B was born to be Wild. And so the adventure was off and running. Our first full day was surreal from watching Clay who could easily be a movie star playing a real life cowboy, saddle up 23 wild horses for our ride up to Spruce Mountain. You would have thought we were all experienced riders. An up-hill ride with stunning landscape through derelict gold mining shafts and abandoned pioneer towns only to arrive and be greeted by a sumptuous gourmet lunch complete with NB’s afternoon libation! Leaving the horses to roam, we hiked back to the ranch in preparation for our opening ceremony. It was a first for some and certainly a first for me sitting in a beautiful sacred Tepee surrounded by 22 powerful women celebrating a 60th birthday and honoring themselves by sharing intentions for living. It was a humanizing and bonding experience. Our second day hiking with Niks
was a hot one with challenging desert-like temps in the high 80’s in the middle of the day so we opted to get back early for some competitive archery. It definitely brought back the camp days for all of us as we got in the spirit big time. Ali managed to get a bull’s-eye while no one was looking…really? It was the fun line and the laughs were unstoppable rolling right into the evening festivities of toasting and roasting our Nancy B to the tune of “look at me I’m Sandra D”. Hysterical! This was when the urge to dance on tables were irresistible well into the wee hours of the night. Blurred Lines was the song of the night when the DJ’s were agreeable. Again, the cowboys and our Navy Seal kept us in line as much as possible but morning yoga was not pretty. Our last day together on the ranch was the absolute clincher. Not only did we play canasta and other board games which never happens on a STAT trip but who knew Joan would be in her element driving like Evel Knievel as we
piled into the ATV’s on property for a late afternoon spin up to boulder valley for our last incredible vista. Beyond fun! Completely dusty and dirty, we cleaned up nicely for our last evening meal together in a cozy candle-lit tepee. The food as usual was absolutely fresh and delicious as it was every feeding. Kudos to Chef Dave. After all is said and done, a STAT trip is nothing without the magnificent women in attendance. Everyone brought their best selves and we continued to shine.
This journey was a group effort as we came together collectively and created some unforgettable memories that we will be able to draw upon in our life whenever we need the strength to smile amidst adversity. My mission is to take women out of their comfort zone away from busy lives into another world to experience nature, cultivate gratitude, contribute to local philanthropic projects, and most importantly to a place we can laugh, cry, and bond. This particular trip was a testament to our birthday girl. Some have been in her life for a long time and some are relatively new soul mates. But her ability to manifest everyone’s place in her heart is a gift and we all felt it. I’m honored to have been chosen to lead such a courageous group of women. We created a bond that will be remembered forever.