In this, her second memoir, New Prairie Woman is Susie Rosso Wolf’s depiction of her journey from Los Angeles to the historical town of Three Forks, Montana. On these pages you will discover the grandeur of “The Last Best Place” through her writing, poetry and photography, the challenges of living in a twenty foot trailer in sub-zero temperatures and how love, perseverance, and the miracle of faith can lift a soul up from the depths of the deepest, darkest waters.
Born in Santa Monica, California, I was raised in the small bedroom community of Sunkist Park that borders Culver City, Playa del Rey, Mar Vista and Venice. I attended Venice High School, West LA Community College and California Institute of the Arts. My studies included English, English Literature, Poetry, Creative Writing, Choir, Classical Voice, Shakespeare, Musical Theater, Television and Film Acting and Art History. In 1980, I relocated to the Pacific Northwest and in 1982 I married Kurt Wolf in Corvallis, Oregon. During the course of our long journey together, I have remained devoted to not only my husband, but to my friends and family, and the arts. What defines me most is my passion for expression through art. I’m an avid reader, writer and poet.I also enjoy painting and photography. Additionally, some folks consider me a pretty good cook.
New Prairie Woman Susie Rosso Wolf Chapter Six, con't
It was good to end the conversation that was beginning to tear me down. I didn’t like the thought of losing her again; I could only take so much of this talk. I wanted to swim hard laps and let my mind clear out for a while. The moment my suit was on I walked out the sliding glass door from our bedroom and dove straight into the deep end. The feeling of plunging into water was always one of my favorite sensations. My love for that splash and sting against my body must have come from all my years of body surfing in the Pacific Ocean. Being slammed into the sandy floor of the ocean then up again into the hard breakers was an addiction I could never deny. I loved the water and couldn’t imagine ever living away from it. As nice as her description of the big star-filled sky and surrounding area was, I knew I’d never be able to leave my ocean.
I swam for a few minutes without coming up for conversation, aggressively attacking the water to vent and release. I splashed like a fish, or a whale depending on who you were and what your opinion was of my massive weight gain since I blew my knee out in 2004. Nevertheless, swimming was what I needed to let go of the stress I felt after realizing that every one of my family members, other than my sister, was soon to be living out of state because from what I heard from Sister, Robert’s father had plans of relocating out of state himself. It was a strange feeling to know that Sister and I would be alone in California.
“Hey pee-ant, knock it off with the splashing and get your butt over here I’m lonely.” She grabbed onto my foot after catching it and pulled me right up and onto my butt. I sputtered and flailed my arms trying not to laugh but managed to swallow a mouthful of water anyway. “T-he heee, see what you get for ignoring me!” Once I regained my balance I stood up and rounded my shoulders like a bull ready for the big fight. I began to huff and snort through my nose, putting my head down and making an awful noise.
“Oh! You are so going to die for that! Are you ready for your punishment lady?”
“Bring it on little mama!”
“Okay, you asked for it! Don’t say I didn’t warn you!” And then I jumped up with both my hands cupped to move the water in her direction and into her eyes as I slapped the surface as hard as I could, then I leaped toward her and jumped on top of her pushing her down into the water while she wrapped her arm around my neck pulling me down with her, and thus, the war began! We played for over an hour cursing at each other like old fish wives or truck drivers and laughing so hard our sides were splitting. Kurt watched our insanity from the Jacuzzi refusing to get involved in our warfare. Before I knew it the sky was fully dark and the few stars that were shining glittered alongside the waxing gibbous moon. I pointed up to the stars and said, “See Brenda, we have stars here too, you don’t need to move away to find them!”
“You don’t have ‘em like they do up there little sister, trust me on that one, okay?”
“I shouldn’t have brought it up,” I said quietly. No one said another word for a while as we soaked in the hot water and looked at the moon as it cast its radiant light across the entire back yard and created a reflection of our enormous date palm tree at the far end of the pool over the water causing the image to dance in its beauteous light as the Jacuzzi flow spilled into the water making ripples across the thirty-five foot long drink. We were all mesmerized by the dancing palm but finally, I was the first to get up and walk into the house for a quick shower, and then both Brenda and Kurt followed my lead to put an end to the night of hilarity and dampened moods. She watched television with me until the wee hours while we talked and giggled and snacked on anything we could get our hands on out of the fridge. Sleep was inevitable though, so after one in the morning I crept down the hall to our bedroom while she found a comfortable position on the sofa under a lightweight blanket. My lungs hurt a little from being exposed to all of the outdoor cigarette smoke blowing in my direction from the two of them puffing all night, so I wheezed as I tried to fall asleep, thinking about the new life that awaited her in Montana.