I missed the family reunion in Montana last year. I was sifting through old photos yesterday and came across pictures from some of our other reunions.

I call my cousins the hunter-gatherers. It's a lot of hiking, cliff-diving and shooting dinners with a big gun. And where else but Glacier can you fly into an airport and find a mounted 1,200-pound Alaskan brown bear in the lobby?

It's so much fun, lying out by the lake while the older girls braid the little girls' hair... Sitting by the bonfire at night while someone plays guitar, some of us sing, Bobby does that thing with the copper wire so that the fire glows red/green/blue and the children shiver while Uncle Mel tells a ghost story, too.

And I remember the year that someone ran through the dining hall under a sheet and rang that dinner bell at midnight. I knew, I knew it was a joke but still, the clanging shook me to the core. And the next day we wiped the bear paw prints off of my brother's truck. Sigh. That's Montana. And that's my family.