Tuesday, July 3, 2012

In the Heart of Colorado

Colorado is beautiful in a way that Maryland is not. It has no grass, only brush which scratches at your legs. In high winds, the dirt comes up off the ground, a dustbowl, and serves you straight in the mouth.

But the Aspens, with their small leaves, flutter in the wind and filter out the sunlight. The vanilla scent of Ponderosa Pine finds floats on the air on warm days. (We've told the children one chocolate manufactured one exists somewhere on the property. They constantly run to sniff each tree. Ha!)

Strange and beautiful flowers dot the paths. Mostly yellows, but there are blues and purples. I learn which ones I can eat, which are sweet, and which will kill if picked at the wrong season. Guides point out prickly, whimsy, and flimsy ferns and bushes so they can tell me that the American Indians used it for sickness or mixing colors or lining their beds. Even the pinecones look like flowers when turned on their sides.

Rocks, giant and black, and red and beautiful stick out of the side of mountains and thrust up in the streams. They've been carried over from the Ice Age, from glaciers, moving slowly for thousands of years before being deposited willy nilly into a carved out field somewhere.

I try to touch all of it and none of it. It's a National Park after all and I have to stay on the trails. But, Oh! The pictures do not to justice and I have to wander off a bit so that I can be surrounded by the whole thing at once.

Hopefully, I wander where no bear or big cat are.

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