We left Ohio on July 7, exhausted from house sales and packing and trashing things over the last month. We each left with only what fit into our cars, an Altima and an Ion. There is something both very sad and very freeing about being able to pack up an entire life into your car and taking off on a 2000 mile cross country trip to start another life.
First sight of the Rockies in Wyoming.
This part of driving out is beyond words. To get your first glimpse of the mountains after being in the car for 20 some hours is like the beginnings of a fountain springing forth with life. It gets bigger and bigger as you drive onward until you feel like you cannot contain the grandeur you are becoming a part of. You feel as though you are shrinking with each mile, and yet, at the same time, you feel all wrapped up in the eternal strength of the arms of God. It is something that I have experienced each time during my trips out here. But this time, I am staying, and get to remain a part of the life of these mountains. I feel like I have always belonged here, and now I am finally home.
"Hey! Where are we now? Is this map edible? Dude - this box is SO tiny! Can I get out and stretch my legs?"
My road facing north
Front of my house
View from out my front door facing west
Back of house
Back deck facing south
Right behind my house about 25 feet away!
"Ahhh...this is the life. Fresh picked spinach in the green house!"
Thea isn't so sure if she likes fresh spinach at first - but it wasn't long before it was all gone.
Chubbs - happy on the back porch watching the river.
Nipper kitty - 15 years young loving her spot on the porch.
There is no way to explain finding this place other than to say it was the will of God. It is beyond beautiful. The landlord is far more a neighbor than a landlord. He is about 60 and his family has been in this valley since 1936. His father is 85 and is an incredibly active man, full of life, always involved in projects including gardening and siding our house in the back! He climbs ladders, rides bikes, carries buckets of rocks and wheelbarrow loads of dirt and debris.
Each of the owners has a hand built home here on the river, similar to ours, that is filled with warmth and stories of their past adventures and family. Antiques of all kinds fill the homes and tell their individual tales. It is a ready made community of people who want to share and be part of something bigger than themselves. The rent here is about $200 less than what it could be, but the owner only wants enough to help pay for the sustaining of the property, not to gouge for profit. About 16 people responded after we did, yet he chose us. He was looking for people who would fit into their lifestyle here, not just anybody who could pay the rent.
So here we are! My sister and I, both starting all over and loving it. Not many understand or even agree with what we did, but the mountains have called to me for many years and I can now say with more understanding than ever before:
"I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
from where shall my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
The Lord will protect your going out and your coming in
From this time forth and forever."