Postscript

December 1, 2008

dsc_9602Some of the U of L’s local Flora and Fauna

Back at Base Camp now. The uniforms have been laundered and pressed  in preparation for the next call of the wild. But how can future  tours-of-duty ever compare with the conviviality we encountered in  Lethbridge? Quite simply, our appetites are whetted for more. We long  for the day we can return to the land of plunging coulee and aroused  rattler, eager student and bounding antelope. Until that time, we remember fondly all those whom we have met: more than sisters, more  than friends.

Day Five in the Field

November 21, 2008

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Ranger Millan proudly showcases a steamer filled with weenies

Nothing inspires camaraderie like a good old-fashioned weenie roast! We lured them with the scent of tube steaks, and within minutes they were drinking fresh-squeezed lesbianade and sporting Junior Lesbian Ranger badges! Rarely have we had the pleasure of converting so many, so quickly. A triumphant ending to what has been a most fruitful week.

Of course recruitment is but the first step. Retention is key. On this, the eve of our departure, we worry about backsliding. A student’s university years are often filled with the playful abandon of joyful experimentation. But alas, upon graduation, many a fine young woman feels the weight of the world upon her and reverts to camouflage (often used as a survival strategy, but not recommended by the Rangers.) Has-bianism is a real problem. All we can do is hope and pray that no Lethbridgian will meet such a fate, and know in our hearts that we have done our utmost to swell the ranks.

We zip up our pup tent one last time here in Southern Alberta, exhausted yet confident that we leave the ecosystem healthier than we found it.

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Ranger Dempsey serving refreshing lesbianade to the student body

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Ranger Millan serves up a weenie to a freshly christened Junior Lesbian Ranger

Day Four in the Field

November 20, 2008

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The Rangers pose with their latest recruit at Lethbridge’s Tourist Info Booth

Confident that we have touched or been touched by as much as one quarter of the student body, we ventured off campus today. We did so with some trepidation. We feared that years of unnatural disasters such as right wing  governments and religious fundamentalism had taken a toll on Southern Alberta. It was also possible that the citizens of Lethbridge, being for the most part older than the impressionable youths who make up the community of University “Pronghorns”, would pose an even greater challenge to Rangerly research, education and recruitment. However, our misgivings were unfounded.

The sights and sounds of this place continue to delight! From storefronts to info booths, coffee shops to hotel hallways, the fine folks of Lethbridge greet us with excitement. Why we can scarcely turn around without a friendly nuzzle from all and sundry!

Do we begin to sadden at our looming departure? Yes. But as professional lesbians, it is both our burden and our good fortune to free-range from coast to coast in lesbianism’s service. Lethbridge is but one ecosystem we can now call home.

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The Rangers discover Lethbridge’s famous westerly wind

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Walking the beat in Downtown L.A.

Day Three in the Field

November 19, 2008

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The Rangers on trail

Devoted as we are, there are there are days when even the hardiest Ranger feels that she would be better off cozy in her camp roll, safe in the warm embrace of a damp dream. Sometimes self-doubt plagues the pluckiest footsoldier, and fatigue weighs heavy upon her body and mind. The sheer number of feral lesbians that await our study is staggering. Why, the very thought leaves us breathless. So it is no wonder that occasionally we waiver. This rare reticence was no doubt compounded by the light dusting of snow that greeted us this morning, chilling our spirits and our knees. And yet, if not the Lesbian Rangers, then who will study Sapphic species yet unplumbed? Who? Who? Who?

The pull of duty and sturdy limbs roused us up, out and onto the bushpath once again. And we were not disappointed. Our day was filled with surprising inroads.

Transcendent moments abounded: an enthusiastic greeting at The Zoo, an opportunity to demonstrate our finely-tuned “gaydar”, and a comradely encounter in the ladies’ loo returned the spring to our step. Certainly there was frustration and yes, exhaustion. Questions crowded our furrowed brows. Will we meet our goals in the short time left to us here? Will our work lift beleaguered lesbian wildlife out of the underbrush and into the hearts and hallways of U of L? Do we have what it takes?

As we swapped tales of adventure with the smartly uniformed lady bus driver on our weary way home, we could not help but feel optimistic, uplifted and filled with a sense that lesbianism’s time is here. We Rangers are but destiny’s midwives.


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The Rangers examining flora


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The Rangers walking in the Coulees

Day Two in the Field

November 18, 2008

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The Rangers with the U of L wildlife

Our work began long before dawn, the gentle breeze caressing our faces, the sounds of the night fading into the brash bustle of the new day. Lesbian spotting requires patience and fortitude, light footfalls and a stout heart! Some would describe lesbians in Lethbridge as endangered. We prefer to think of the ecosystem here in terms of its limitless potential for growth. Yes, the rigours of professional lesbianism can be overwhelming at times, but the rewards are worth the wait! After along day assessing and addressing hundreds of Lethbridge students, after serving and servicing, protecting and prodding we feel we have begun to make real inroads here. While recruitment is in the percolating stage, yet to show any quantifiable results, the interest and passions of the student body has been sufficiently aroused so as to leave us feeling that the remainder of our time in Lethbridge will be packed with excitement and revelation. Clearly the landscape itself inspires with its undulating coulees, valleys softly rippling and fecund micro climates alive with possibilities. Night has long since fallen but our work continues.

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The Rangers posing in front of the High Level Bridge

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The Rangers check out the Brewery Gardens

Day One in the Field

November 17, 2008

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The Lesbian Rangers serving lemonade to civilians at the University of Lethbridge

After arduous preparation and eager anticipation, the day has finally come!

The Lethbridge tour-of-duty has begun. We have conducted basic reconnaissance and begun to acquaint ourselves with the local flora and fauna. The student body at University of Lethbridge seems receptive, albeit skittish. They were lured into the open by our free lemonade and they lingered to admire our uniforms (several young men clearly exhibited Ranger envy).  Perhaps our rousing slide show tomorrow will further engender their trust and arouse their curiosity. It is our fervent hope that by the conclusion of our mission we will be able to hand-feed theses impressionable youths. In fact a weenie roast is planned! In the meantime, we will continue to serve as a visible example of biological diversity and uncanny posture, on the trails and on the streets.

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The Rangers on location at the University of Lethbridge

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