The smell fills your ole factory senses before you actually see anything, middle earth is churning and gurgling the chemicals within. Plumes of vapors rise into the blue sky and disappear behind wooded pines. I find myself in Yellowstone’s infamous mud pots.

Thirty years ago I walked the same wooden planks, making fart jokes with my brothers as the parents kept a watchful eye on us all to make sure we kids didn’t do something foolish like fall in and get boiled alive.

This time around I watch new families go through a similar ritual. I patiently wait for them to pass as I focus on how I see the area this time around. The same place seen through a different perspective.

The living earth, dragon’s breath escapes from the rock openings. Perhaps one day the beast within will rise from below and smite this area in volcanic fury.

One day perhaps, but not today.

Wench, bring my ale, what say you?

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