What was I thinking? Of course it would be a challenge. Of course it would be tricky. Most of my life up until I was twenty-nine took place in this tiny bit of geography. Elementary school, junior high, high school, friends' houses, stores, parks: all within walking distance. I could walk to college from here, if I had a mind to. That's where I grew up.
This was the corner where I had this thought. That's the place where I first realized that. All of it in the shadow of those big slabs of granite. I made a deal with the planet that if I ever went away that it would leave those vertical reminders of my place at the foot of the Rockies. There they are, on the wall of my home in California. Reminding me of that promise in that very rocky way. I can go back anytime I want to. I went back recently just to make sure the Flatirons were still there.
There is a curse upon that land. I knew this long before I ever tried to leave. It was part of what made me so comfortable in my stasis. Why move if I would always be drawn back here? It made my decision so very simple. Then I left, and I found myself looking for excuses to come back. I brought my family back to stare up at that first wave of the Continental Divide, and they were duly impressed. This past visit, my son announced his interest in bringing "all our family and friends to Boulder. I think they would love it here." Of course they would. Somewhere, Chief Niwot is laughing from his perch on the path along Boulder Creek. Good magic.