We

Imbolc and the 3/4 Moon

Kate at Purim, 2018

Saturday gratefuls: Tom, leaving on a jet plane. Black Hat Cattle Company. Jon, still struggling with thrush. Bed slats realigned. Leah. Happy Camper. Good sleep. Blue Sky. Solar panels. Induction stove. The new kitchen. Life emerging. Regenerative agriculture. The Solar snow shovel. Judaism. CBE. I’m a part of it. More than a camp follower, less than a member of the tribe.

Sparks of Joy and Awe: Friendship, chosen family

Kate at CBE, September 2018

Breakfast at Aspen Perks yesterday with Tom. He went from there to the Hermitage to attend a virtual board meeting of ESI, the company to which he sold Crane Engineering. They made a decision. Kep kept Tom company.

I went to King Sooper to cash a check, the rebate of overpaid dental insurance for Kate in 2021. While at the bank, I said to the teller who had bent over, “Masks make hearing even harder.” She smiled, a beautiful young Latina, after standing back up, and said, “Masks make hearing even harder.” I told her that was what I had just said. We laughed for a full minute or so. Take that pandamndemic.

When I got back home, Tom and I took off for the Happy Camper. A second stop for him. Time for a second purchase in a couple of weeks for me. More important. Leah.

Leah, former executive director director at CBE, now works in the Happy Camper office. She came out a bit hesitantly, not sure she knew a Charlie. When she saw me, it’s been two years, she lit up. Charlie! Big hug. Her purple tinted hair, her Grateful Dead dancing bears lanyard, her big smile. Second big hug. I loved her, too, Charlie. I know.

A long conversation ensued. About her and her partners relocation to Vegas to care for his mother. Their return in November after her death. Vegas stinks of gambling and addiction. And really damned hot.

In the course of the conversation she included me in a we. We have all these holidays and each one’s different and a little weird. We, meaning Leah, myself, and the other CBE’ers. I loved that.

She also said, and I don’t have this quite right: All our holidays boil down to three things: somebody tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat! Leah’s a character and I’ve missed her.

Back to the Hermitage for a nap. Tom back to Comfort Suites. We met later at the Black Hat Cattle Company for a final meal together. Tom and I understand each other. Like brothers, he says. And, I agree. Brothers from another mother.

He took the Kerr Gulch Road to get to Kittredge. The Black Hat sits right on 74 with some of its parking places only a few feet from the north bound lane. The Kerr Gulch Road, which I’ve not driven, added to the western flare for Tom. It winds through ranches and Mountain vistas before narrowing considerably as speed signs drop to 20 mph, then 10. At 10 it becomes an almost single lane gravel road before depositing the persistent traveler onto 74 not far from the Black Hat.

Part of the oddness of Mountain living is you never know what a road’s like until you’ve driven it. That may sound obvious, but the differences are stark. Some roads, many, trace Mountain Streams as they follow gravity’s insistent pull toward sea level. Others climb up Mountain sides in switchbacks. But from the intersection with whatever road you’re on, they may look like any another country lane, nothing remarkable. Some valleys are narrow, but there’s usually enough room for a farm or two in the flat Land on either side of the Stream. Sometimes not. A series of switchbacks can require careful navigation, then open up to a wide view of Mountain Ranges and Valleys.

Life goes on, in endless song…

 

 

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