Posts Tagged With: Happiness

Colorado… land of dreams…

It was the back to school dance of 1980. I (Lynda) was starting my sophomore year: Erick was starting his Junior year at Goddard High School in Roswell, NM. That was when it all started.  Erick had seen me during the school year but I was going steady (remember that term) with a friend of his named Frank. Frank and I broke up over the summer and I was a single girl… until that Back to School dance. Erick wasted no time. He immediately asked me to dance and we danced all night together. Yes, he asked for my phone number and with much excitement I gave it to him.

When he called the next week (he was genius) he said that he was taking his younger sister to the circus in town and would I like to go. How could mom say no to that? He was such a gentleman. He, of course, met my parents and promised to have me home right after the circus. He opened my door and did all the things that a young man is supposed to do. Oh, and he cleaned up so nice. I was so proud to take his arm and hold his hand and walk next to him. Little did I know that 22 years later when I took that hand again it would take our breath away. More on that later…

As we began to get more and more serious in our dating he gave me a Promise Ring. It had our names down each side and a tiny diamond at the top. We talked about where we would go after we graduated high school. I had moved to Roswell in the summer of 1979 between ninth and tenth grade. My freshman year, 1978, was spent in Colorado Springs; CO. Colorado was greener than anything I had ever seen at the time.

My parents moved there from Oceanside, CA where I went to seventh and eights grade.  Oceanside was ok but it was a rough time for me and I was thrilled to leave. Colorado was different. I had always lived in the desert, never where the scent of pines filled the air and there was snow.  And yes, I had to walk a quarter mile in the snow to wait for the school bus. We had 3 acres just outside of Colorado Springs and we could look out over the city lights at night and see the tram lights as they went up the side of Pikes Peak. Under a full moon the snow on the mountains would glisten and reflect the moonlight. Twinkling stars were everywhere.

We decided after graduation we would move to Colorado and buy an A-frame house and grow old together. We talked about living in Colorado; what it would be like and what we would do.

Well, he had difficulty with a certain vice-principle in school. It was clear that Mr. Lair was going to do everything he could to see that Erick didn’t graduate. Erick knew he couldn’t support me without an education so he went to speak to the recruiters. He would have liked to join the Air Force but poor vision and glasses deleted that option so instead he enlisted in the Marines. He knew I would talk him out of it so he didn’t tell me until right before he left for boot camp. I was angry. No, I was Livid! But there was nothing I could do but let him go and promise to be here when he came home.

He came home after graduation from boot camp. OMG did he looked good. He walked taller and straighter than I had ever seen anyone walk. He was no longer a high school kid, he had become not just a man; he had become a Marine. He was home for about 15 days and then he was gone again. He had become a Marine, but I was still just a high school girl whose worth is measured by whether she had a date to the prom. Long story short, I lasted through boot camp but I didn’t have what it took to wait for him to come home again. So our romance ended with a letter.

It was 10 years ago; November seventh, 2003 when I got the email that said, “Is this the same Lynda Smith?” When he later asked, “What are you doing?” my response was “leaving a bad job and a bad relationship” He said, “Why don’t you come up to Alaska?” and I did. We knew that we had unfinished business. He met me in the airport with twenty-two red and pink roses (one for each year we had been apart) and a fur coat – it was winter in Alaska.

When we saw each other we both started running. he was trying to video me but dropped the camera to his side as the microphone of the still rolling camera recorded “oh my God.” We embraced, in the middle of the isle until security asked us to move. We gathered our things, I donned the fur and we walked – or should I say floated – outside to the parking area. Just like in high school he opened my door, helped me in and as I shook off the cool night air, he appeared in the driver’s seat of the Land Cruiser.

As if there had never been a day missed, our hands met on the console and our fingers interlaced. The moment our fingers found each other, we both gasped for air. The feeling of our hands together took both our breath away. Apparently every handhold for 22 years was unconsciously compared to that handhold. It was as though our hands found home. Once we found our breath, we kissed again. It was a long, hard, welcome-home kiss.

Now thirty-two years later as I type this we are traveling in Koko (our home on wheels) to set up in Breckenridge, Colorado for the ski season. He just asked me “how do you like our A-Frame” my response… “I think I‘ll adjust.” No, Koko isn’t exactly an A-Frame, I think maybe she is better.

Colorado Rocky Mountain High

Colorado Rocky Mountain High

We will spend the majority of the winter here in Breckenridge with our Epic Ski Pass. The Epic gives us access to several ski resorts in Colorado but also 2 in California and four in Europe – should we choose to go there. The month of December we will fly down to Belize where we will SCUBA dive the Blue Hole, tour the Mayan ruins in Guatemala, go hiking, cave tubing, zip lining, you name it.

And then? In January back here to finish out the ski season before meandering our way to the Florida Keys for more SCUBA diving.  We couldn’t do that sort of thing if we had a traditional A-Frame. So yes, I think I will adjust to our “A-Frame”

This dream took 33 years to bring to fruition. Let’s create another one that is 32 years in the making. But this time, lets enjoy all those years together. I love you, Babe.

Categories: Adventure, Adventure Travel, Backpacking, Camping, Downhill Skiing, Hiking, Hot Tubbing!, Living Passionately, Love, Reconnection, RV Travel, Scuba, Ski | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Down time

Well, after an exciting and enjoyable hike in the Wind River Mountains, Lynda and I are going to relax in Kalispell, Montana. We need some repairs done to the rig that are over due (result of a generator fire in Wyoming where someone put their generator too close to some trees) The embers came down on our awnings so those need to be replaced.

Next we are meeting some friends, Greg and Aleicia Landon that I haven’t see in 10 years, and have wondered about for the past few weeks. I had remembered that they had headed down this way, then a few days ago, Aleicia found me on face book.. Small small world

So Lynda has to put in some work time tomorrow and Tuesday, and I will be doing some work myself, mostly on managing the Allstate claim, the repairs and so on. In the meantime, a friend sent us a few more photos of our backpacking adventure with NOLS. (National Outdoor Leadership School). Folks these people are amazing as are their courses. AND they are tax write offs, so we intend do do a few more.

I am looking at one of their course, hiking the Dolomite’s in Italy. Another one of those “bucket list” things…

Dolomites

We are also prepping for our month long trip down to Belize, which should be a divers dream.  We just finalized our costs for that with our travel agent, Christine Cotten. GREAT travel agent for two clueless travelers.

But for now? Dinner with friends.. Then while Lynda is working I will also look into day hikes in Glacier National Park. We may or may not make it to Mt Rainier this year, and if not, no worries we will catch it on our way to Alaska next year.

Now for a change of pace. I have read several blog sites that entertain our way of life. and it occured to me that a lot of “curve balls” in life have placed us on our current path. Those include some cancer scares, change in employment, and the desire to find something “different” in life’s path.

I have been reviewing the past 10 years or so that Lynda and I have shared, and those years have been the best in my life.. and I mean that. Never, in a million years did I ever once think that I would end up with my high school sweetheart cruising the roads of America, and living a life that I had buried many years ago.

We have made GREAT friends in San Diego, and we miss them terribly, but you know something? I do NOT miss life in the “Cube Farm”. I truly hated what I did. I have spent 10 years (and of that 10 years, the MAJORITY of that time) working jobs that went nowhere, created nothing specific, left nothing behind, and accomplished little.  I look back at that and remember the ONLY reason I worked them was a means to an end. They all paid really well.

I traded my life for money. Something you cannot recover, something you cannot undo. Once your time is spent, it is gone. and that should be a precious resource that a person doles out with great care. Instead? I blew those days, months, years.

There is some good in that life of “chasing the all-mighty dollar”. My wife’s health is on the right path, we have the means to support ourselves as we rocket down the road, and each step on our path has led us to where we are. But let me say this. I have had many friends who have never had the opportunity to step out of the “American Dream” and try living for a life’s adventure. To truly jump onto the road less traveled and see where it leads.

They lost their gamble with life. Their lives ended much sooner than they ever expected, and with that, their dreams of adventure cut short. I look at others that have found themselves at their twilight years some very pleased with their lives, others? Not so much. and now, adventure time is over. Their bodies are old and with that, adventure is watching a movie.

So I have a suggestion, take it for what it is worth. If you find yourself “lacking” in being passionate about living? Try having an adventure. Even if it is only for a short time. Let go of the “stuff” that you own, quit allowing it to “own” you. Look for what you are truly passionate about, what gives you that “rush” to live..

I look back at a book I read, and in that, it was all about a group of fish that learned to hang on to the rocks in a river for survival. They had been raised to believe that if you ever let go of those rocks, you would be dashed to death on the rapids below.

One such fish told his friends that he would rather die on the rapids than to die of boredom, and they called him insane. He released his grip and as expected, the rapids bruised him, and pummeled him pretty severely. But, as he went further down the stream he found that he was swimming in new waters, a life  much better than clinging to the rocks. and the other fish called him “enlightened”… Truth is you can choose how you live at any point in your life. and yes, there are consequences for those choices, but for us?

The rapids were not that painful, and swimming in the river?

One hell of an adventure

IMG_4003

Categories: Adventure, Adventure Travel, Backpacking, Camping, Hiking, Living Passionately, Love, Reconnection, RV Travel | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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