I See Mountains
By: Shauna Armitage
The sun rose over the plains this morning and continued on across the sky to shine over the mountain range in the west. The light of day hit each individual peak in turn and cast shadows down into the valleys. Soft light covered the sky in every direction, and it was impossible not to feel serene and a deep sense of tranquility.
The scene before me is something that many people dream about. They save their pennies and plan vacations just to experience the beauty of the majestic Rocky Mountains, a week of serenity in a new locale—somewhere off their own little map. There’s nothing like an afternoon hike in the shadow of Pike’s Peak or a delicious meal made from locally grown ingredients while gazing at the mountains as they stretch endlessly to both the north and the south. I, however, wake up to this stunning setting every day of the week.
My home is at the base of Rockies in southeast Colorado where the sharp peaks meet the less imposing plains. There is so much to love about this place, but because I call it home, it’s easy to take it all for granted. It is a part of my regular routine, so it no longer feels special—but it is.
People who have the pleasure of living near the ocean probably don’t hear the gentle, soothing sound of waves crashing against the shore or take the time to breathe in the sweet salty air. Those who live in the woods may not see the allure of the strong white moonlight as it breaks through the barrier of branches above and makes its way down to dance along the ground or hear the lovely song the crickets sing.
Every destination has its own unique charm and about a thousand reasons for visiting, and it’s important to remember this—especially when it comes to the place where you dwell. The lure of your own backyard may not be immediately apparent, but when you sit and take the time to find out what makes your particular location so special, you open up a world of possibilities for yourself without breaking the bank.
Traveling locally can be a new and refreshing experience! Notice the local sounds and smells; try a restaurant that you’ve never been to before or stay at a hotel down the street for a mini escape from reality; contact a local tour company and discover an activity that you didn’t know was available to you so close to home. Exploring everything that makes your locale extraordinary will give you the opportunity to get away without stepping foot in the airport.
When I wake up in the morning I see lots of things. I see diversity. I see beauty. I see light. I see a forest of green trees and a plethora of rough, jagged cliffs. I see red rocks and little pools of water that reflect the world back to me. I’m at home. I have perspective. I’m at peace.
I see mountains. What do you see?