Eight years and counting
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Summer has arrived in the Rocky Mountains and I’d like to wish myself luck getting anything done that isn’t defined as fun. Rearranging a closet, for example.
Playing croquet, not an example.
If the warm weather alone isn’t distraction enough, there are all the fun activities and people to enjoy them with that make living in Colorado a dream, an oft-used phrase here. I may sound like a travel guide, but if hiking, trail running, mountain biking, rafting, kayaking, stand-up paddling, fly fishing, Jeeping, eating, drinking, golfing, hot springs soaking, zip lining, bungee jumping, playing tennis and attending outdoor festivals aren’t enough options for those who live here, I might suggest a more stimulating lifestyle. Like living in the Swiss Family Tree House with full-time access to Disney World, most importantly Space Mountain and the Mad Tea Party Cups.
Now that’s a good name for a Tea Party spin-off. Or maybe Magic Tea Party.
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That’ll put the fun into politics.
Sometimes I actually feel like I live in a magic kingdom. Colorado is, after all, a place of beauty and awe-inspiring features that I didn’t even see until I picked up and moved out here eight years ago. This month, I’ll be celebrating that giant leap into a life change I probably would have never predicted in college, or even after college. I always seemed to be content enough with a structured life. College, marriage, house, corporate job, kids, grandkids, retirement …
That’s how life’s plan was panning out for me.
Somewhere between corporate job and kids my life changed to the point of changing everything I believed about life’s order. I had the corporate job, but not the kids. I’d like to say retirement is my next step, but I think I have a few years for that. More like 40, since I’m counting.
For that, I would also like to wish myself luck.
I do know that living in Colorado has taken the priority out of living the way I always thought I was supposed to live. I don’t concern myself so much with yard work. Instead, I’m mostly thinking about rafting in the summertime. Of course I never thought writing jokes would be on a to-do list for the week. That’s a priority as well.
Telling them is part of the fun.
I realized recently just how much my life has changed in the last eight years after attending my friend Jen’s birthday party. There were cupcakes and wine – no party can go wrong there. And, to the delight of the partygoers, fire spinning. It’s not every day I see a fire twirler perform. But maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised, considering I do live in a town that’s home to many performers and artists.
As I celebrate my eight years in the valley this month, I’m taking notice of all the things I love about living in Colorado. That could be the cool mountain air that lacks the humidity I was so accustomed to growing up in Indiana. Or, it could be as simple as a quick glimpse of Mt. Sopris each morning.
I don’t quite recall that being penciled into my life plan.
I’ve always felt that I came to Colorado for a reason. I wasn’t sure if that had something to do with the person I would eventually marry and have kids with, or if it were something that had nothing to do with a person at all. Maybe it’s comedy. Maybe it’s watching fire dancers. Maybe it’s neither. Eight years ago, I thought I would only be coming out here for a couple years, “just to check it out.” A couple years in and I was a goner. I’m always open to new experiences, though. Life could take me just about anywhere, if I let it.
Who needs luck for that?
– April E. Clark has some work to do on that closet but she’d rather be rafting. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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