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Happy Trails!

Tonight I was reading about America’s Happiest Cities. A recent gallop poll named the happiest and saddest cities to live in today. I was thinking about what makes these particular cities happy places to live and wondering about what drew folks to each spot. None of the top 10 are places I’m drawn to, but the people there are extra happy, they say.

I was going to write about that. Maybe tomorrow night. As I was wondering about what makes a happy city, I thought about the paths that lead there. Since I’m now in Texas, paths morphed into trails. Which obviously led to Happy Trails. In other words, I got  side tracked by Roy Rogers.

The Roy Rogers Show aired from 1951-1957. I made my debut late in ’56. Back in the day, there was only ABC, NBC, and CBS. You couldn’t channel surf to find your favorite cowboy. Sunday night TV for me was The Wonderful World of Disney. They didn’t have a lot of Disney cowboys when I was growing up.

I did catch some episodes later. This is what I liked about the show:

Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin’ until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we’re together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.

Happy trails to you, until we meet again.

Dale Evans wrote the song to to replace the original, giving it a more western cowboy sound. She and Roy performed it at the end of each show. I loved that song! I would sit through the entire 30 minutes, waiting for Roy and Dale to wish me Happy Trails.

The opening was always the same:

Announcer: “The Roy Rogers Show, starring Roy Rogers, King of the Cowboys; Trigger, his golden palomino; and Dale Evans, Queen of the West; with Pat Brady, his comical sidekick; and Roy’s wonder dog, Bullet.”


Roy Rogers played by Roy Rogers

Trigger, Roy’s horse, played by Trigger, Roy’s horse

Bullet, Roy’s dog, played by Bullet, Roy’s dog

Dale Evans, played by Dale Evans (Rogers)

Pat Brady played by Pat Brady

Now that’s reality TV. How un-ostentatious.

Happy trails has a second verse:

Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It’s the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here’s a happy one for you.

I don’t live in one of the happiest cities (Austin made the cut, but it’s a good ways north). I don’t live near any city, happy or sad. I do live real close to an oil rig. I talked to dozens of guys everyday who’ve gotten here following all kinds of paths. I see drivers who’ve been on the road all night, roughnecks, and derrick-men and tool pushers at the end of their 12 hour shifts; sales men and women who sometimes drive 5 hours to spend 5 minutes with the Company Man.

Most of them are hot. If they come and go on my night shift, pretty much everyone is tired. But still, almost all will smile and say Hey,can I bring you something from town, or How’s your day(night) going? Yep, it’s the way you ride the trail that counts.

Tomorrow I’ll write about living in happy cities. Tonight I think I’ll just stick to Happy Trails!


One thought on “Happy Trails!

  1. I DO remember Roy and the gang! I got up early every Saturday to sit as close to the TV as I could get. Just my cereal bowl and Roy. We had a great time! I never did like the episodes where Dale was featured. I was jealous. Pretty sure I could out-shoot her, anyway. What did she have that I wasn’t gonna have?

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