I have been on a mountain climbing rampage the last few weeks, summiting Bear Peak, then Green, then a scouting of Eldorado Mountain with my 2 year old, then Most of the 14er Mt. Bierstadt, turned back by bad diarrhea and a fever 500 feet shy of the summit. Then on Sunday morning I hoofed it up the tallest local peak, South Boulder Peak, 2900 feet of it. and this afternoon busted up and down Mt Sanitas in just over an hour. I have the bug!! I find it somewhat amusing that I was hugely into mountain climbing last time I lived here, 1995-2000 but it took me over a year to get into it this time around. Seems it is in full swing now. I’m not sure what was the catalyst, maybe our youngest at 8 months is now pretty well under control, maybe I’m just in shape now so it’s fun. Maybe just sheer determination to get to the top of the first one, Bear Peak – and the love of it keeps me rolling along. Or the very mild encouragement of my property manager – or more like the example he sets of doing all sorts of cool quests such as hiking from Wyoming to New Mexico, hiking 19 days in the Grand Gulch, paddling accross the whole of the Boundary Waters, climbing every one of the 119 named Flatirons… stuff like this gets me fired up.
Today as I gutted it up Sanitas, it occurred to me, I was smiling at everyone. In the past, meaning like 2-12 months ago I would have been suffering. Today I felt great and threw out smiles to everyone I passed, getting many smiles and the occasional scowl in return. The handful of times I’d climbed Sanitas or the Goat Trail before, I would get mostly scowls and the occasional smile and friendly, happy greeting. Much better turn of events today, and I have to say the old theory that you get back what you put out certainly seems to have proved itself today. Much more pleasant than other trips. I was happy as could be, grateful, excited, feeling great. Feeling as though I somewhat fit in now in Boulder, where fitness is so important. Though we still don’t own a home and maybe never will here (story for another time, I have my reasons aside from homes being not super cheap), I still am feeling more comfy with the whole scene. Some downsides as in a lot of entitlement and trust fund folks (not all bad) and some bratty kids and many others having more money than us, but so many upsides like great weather (though I might qualify that – summers are too hot – I prefer summer in Michigan, Chicago, Cape Cod, Nantucket, and winters in Boulder are not all that easy, good bit more Snowy and cold than I remember Denver), hiking and mountain biking and climbing and skiing all really close, Denver and big city stuff all close, smallish town feel but still big enough to have lots of festivals and activities. Lot of nice midwest folks. Cool downtown area, lots of great restaurants. Too many random spiritual folks, but a great community of Christians we’re meeting through preschool and Church at Cornerstone and in our life groups.
As I made my way down my 5th mountain in three weeks or so, I couldn’t help but think of all the things I’m grateful for. Great books, amazing wife and marriage, she’s beautiful, fun, funny, fit, amazing mother, great homemaker, terrific happy cook, improving herself all the time, loves our kids, from a solid loving family. Three wonderful healthy hilarious fun beautiful smart fun and funny and active daughters. Amazing parents and sister and nieces and nephew. Wonderful aunts and uncles, amazing country, great business I own, my ability to make a living and live where I please and travel as I like. An incredible life.
On the way down, awash in exuberance, I smiled and started on my three favorite mantras, saying each of them out loud over and over, sometime with arms raised over my head: “I love myself, I love myself, I love myself” “God’s wealth is circulating in my life, His wealth is flowing to me in avalanches of abundance, all my needs goals and desires are met instantaneously by Jesus Christ for I am one with god and God is everything amen” ” I expand in success, abundance and love every day as I inspire those around me to do the same.”
My legs were tired on the way up but they kept at it, my lungs were right there with me, keeping up, and my knees felt fine. I enjoyed the summit for a bit, drank some water, and headed down. I loaded up our old yukon with just me, posted my Strava time/map, and headed into town, Ozo chocolate bar sounded good so I found an easy parking spot, walked a block and settled into a spot, answering emails and skypes with a comfortable smile on my face and fresh trail dust on my shoes. A call from my wife to let me know kids swim classes at four – perfect.
Life… so good. Boulder for all its faults I am more than content with today 🙂