Babbs in the Woods: Is that a sock on the sidewalk? Or what?

Recently on a trip to Bozeman, Mont., courtesy of Prois Hunting and Field Apparel, Kirstie Pike and I wrapped up our evening called Ladies’ Night at The Powder Horn in historic downtown Bozeman. We really needed to head back to the motel to work, but on the way, we stopped at the city library so Kirstie could meet Nomkoo.

Who in the wide world of environmental awareness is Nomkoo?

Kirstie Pike and Nomkoo. Photo by Barbara Baird.

Nomkoo is short for Nonkhubulwane, a nine-foot-tall, 1.3-ton elephant sculpture made of woven recycled tires. Made in Africa by artist Andries Botha, Nomkoo is traveling internationally to “encourage creative projects and discussions about a more respectful and sustainable relationship with the earth.” Bozeman is one of five cities in the U.S. to host her as part of her North American Tour. The city of Bozeman embraced this giant, and held poetry readings, a song competition and various events circling her rather large body on the lawn of the library.

Wait … there are more …

Nomkoo belongs to a international troupe of elephants made of tires that travel the world, leaving a rather large carbon footprint, I’d say, to promote “issues of sustainability, conservation, the environment and the inter-relationships of all living things.”

But wait … what’s that sock doing on the sidewalk?

Kirsite, an RN when not designing or marketing women’s camo, has two factors in her favor when it comes to being aware of her surroundings: she’s a hunter in the West, and oh yeah, she’s the mom of two teenage girls.

“What is that?” she asked and pointed to a shape on the sidewalk near the library.

We walked closer to see. It was a sock, and it looked like a hiking sock. Just lying there stretched out.

“Wait!” said Kirstie, because now she had spotted the sock’s mate, across from it and near a bench. “There’s another one.”

We wondered why someone would give up their socks at this site. Or, perhaps the socks flew out of someone’s pack while bicycling by?

Just goes to show you about life. You can think you’re going to stop and learn something along the way, in this case, about the importance of sustainability, and you wind up wondering how a pair of good-looking hiking socks got left on a sidewalk instead.

You may read more about Nomkoo at Donations are welcome.

Check out Prois’ line of women’s camo at Purchases are welcome.

  • About Barbara Baird

    Publisher/Editor Barbara Baird is a freelance writer in hunting, shooting and outdoor markets. Her bylines are found at several top hunting and shooting publications. She also is a travel writer, and you can follow her at


The Conversation

  • Jim Spencer says: September 30, 2010 at 10:47 am

    Yep. Me, I’d have picked ’em up, like Katherine said. NONE of my socks match.

    Incidentally, am I the only Y chromosome-carrier who reads this stuff?

  • Kirstie Pike says: September 30, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Huh…that is indeed a good point, Jim… but the socks were pretty funny. : )

  • Jim Spencer says: September 30, 2010 at 9:17 am

    Who gives a damn about the socks? The meat of the story is the hypocrisy of hauling “an international troupe” of fake elephants around the world to promote greenism and a lambs-laying-down-with-lions philosophy, which no doubt also includes an anti-hunting element. That’s what “conservation, the environment and the interrelationships of all living things” is double-speak for, you know.

    Lambs do indeed lay down with lions, but you gotta keep adding lambs.

    So call me a curmudgeon.

  • NorCal Cazadora says: September 29, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    Stupid socks. Did they not know they were being stalked by a mighty huntress? I tell you, socks have no sense these days. 🙁

  • Katherine Browne says: September 29, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    Why didn’t you pick those up? Who in their right mind wastes a good pair of socks found on the street? It isn’t often you find a matching pair. And you call yourselves environmentalists 🙂

  • Kirstie Pike says: September 29, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Yes….it was a dirty sock. Then we found it’s brother. Odd…why would someone shed their socks in front of the library?

  • The Hunter's Wife says: September 29, 2010 at 9:14 am

    Wondering if that’s a gray sock or was it dirty?