Growing up a “city girl,” I am awed by the American West, the views so magnificent they defy explanation. I can only understate their grandeur. The breathtaking beauty of the crystal capped peaks exquisitely chiseled over millions of years will remain forever painted on my heart. I am just a speck…a breath in this timeless world.
In Yellowstone, I am a silent witness to fresh gleaming snow in July and jaw dropping waterfalls cascading onto rocks below to meet the rushing waters of the grandest of rivers. There are lakes, awesome mountains, waterfalls and towering pines… meadows filled with wildflower in green pastures. In the distance a grizzly bear munching on chokecherry, ambling along oblivious to its status of recent endangered species. And just ahead a remarkable portrait to mark the western world, a massive herd of Buffalo, a welcoming committee to the West for this city girl.
What a privilege to live in this country, to partake in views unselfishly set aside for all the world to see.
I am in this part of the country to attend my husband John’s high school reunion in Lusk, Wyoming. Lusk is a small-town, slower paced, bucolic and proud, American flags fly at every door. Gathered here are ranchers and farmers, cowboys and industry titans each leaving the simple but strenuous life to make their fortunes in far flung places and then make a yearly pilgrimage, back to the pull of home.
We live in a Country of contradiction, of simplicity and success. Here in the American West values transcend circumstance. The people I meet envisioned success in far flung places but the love of home and hearth and valued friendships bring them back to this place to replenish the spirit.
I meet hunters and fishermen, wild life photographers, artists, chefs, a fighter jet pilot, a world renown veterinarian and a famous roper and I see my Wyoming cowboy husband with new eyes and feel fortunate to be exposed to a life that I had previously viewed through a cloudy lense.