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Week 3
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Woman with horse
  The families make their way to their new homes by horse and by wagon.

Update from the field:
Maro Chermayeff, Producer/director

As the families prepared their period-accurate 1880s wagons, much smaller in size then they had imagined, already the problems had begun. What should they take? What should they leave behind? They were facing necessity vs. luxury, and I was observing and shooting as they made thoughtful, considered choices. But every part of the day brought another challenge: How should we transport our puppies? (If they ride in the cart, their mother might jump alongside and risk being run over by a wagon wheel. So should they go in a hand-pushed wheelbarrow?) How far can the cows walk? (Modern-day milking cows have had traveling "bred out of them," and they would not survive the distance.) These and many other questions, not the least of which is safety with animals -- teams of horses are notoriously dangerous -- have been on our minds.

As a film crew we feel responsible, and we are prepared ... but we also need to run with it. What happened in the past is what will happen to our families. A typical sequence from the field was as follows. Here we go ...

As I pant, running alongside the wagon train -- which moves much faster then we initially expected -- I realize how old I am getting. I am, after all, a director -- not a

"'Anything can happen' is our only expectation, and this proves accurate."

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The families on the wagon train.
Bernie talks about the tools that will be used on the houses. Read his bio.

Next week's story: The families arrive at the land they will call home for the next five months.

The Way it was

mountain goat. "Anything can happen" is our only expectation, and this proves accurate: our road is cut off by a flood of water, and we will now have to cross the river in deeper water than we had scouted weeks before. "How muddy is the bottom?" our inquisitive Series Producer, Simon Shaw, asks our animal expert Rawhide Johnson. "Hard to say," Rawhide answers in his Western twang. So, what do all good directors do when in a pinch? I walked straight into the river with my jeans, cleared the tangled brush, and stood waist deep. "I think they can make it!" I screamed to the shore. "Anything for the show," I mutter under my breath ...

Watch our adventure in Episode One. You have to see it to believe it.

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