Thursday, April 12, 2018
A Quick Retreat Home
I've been busting my butt for months now, since the book came out, working on a gazillion different things, trying to keep up with everything and I finally got to the point where I needed a break. January, February and March were nonstop, the only days I really took off were the beer tour in February and my birthday- last two blogposts.
It's between Mt. Princeton and Mt. Antero. Ponderosa pines, aspen, and pinon pine dot the hillsides. The 14,000 foot peaks of Antero and Princeton are overhead.
I call it home because it is. We have property up on Trout Creek Pass about 15 miles northeast of Buena Vista. And it's just the other side of Cottonwood and Monarch Passes from Gunnison and Crested Butte. South of Leadville where I spent every summer in the 1990s. The other side of Poncha Pass from the San Luis Valley and Alamosa, where Dennis lived and trained for a year under Coach Vigil. This is all home. Back in the 90s when I was teaching at Western, I used to come over the hill once a week to soak in the hot springs, it was my sanctuary then and I guess it always will be.
I made the reservation for a room way up on the hill, and they gave me the best room on the property- the westernmost room with the best view, and I scheduled a couple of massages at the spa, and planned to relax, soak, do some writing for me, and generally veg out.
I did all of the above except the writing. It felt so good to do nothing.
Last week sucked, we lost someone from the running community, Kirsten. As much as I hate cancer cliches, I'll say it anyway, cancer sucks. She was too young (45) and had too much left to do, like raising her twin pre-adolescent girls. It totally completely sucks. Her memorial service and funeral were over the weekend and Monday. I went to the service/mass at the church on Monday, many of us from the running community were there. It was really hard. Really. I'm not going into any more details but it just really, totally, completely sucked.
So this little retreat I had planned couldn't have come at a better time.
Our neighbor across the street retired recently and he kept an eye on the girls (Velcro & Gypsy) while Dennis was at work. I drove up Tuesday morning and took my time, got there around 1, checked into the room, and went down to the pool until my massage appointment. It was warm and spring-like, warmer and springier- if that's a word- than I can ever remember it being in April. I soaked up the sun for an hour and then had my massage, which was perfectly relaxing.
I went back out to the poolside after, then walked back up the hill to my room. I went into town to get some Mexican food-take out- and went back to the room and just relaxed.
I normally would run up the big hill toward Mt. Princeton and see how far I could take the trail before it was packed with snow, but I didn't feel like it. I just wanted to relax. So I went down to the pool and got in the water, soaking in the hottest pools first and ending up in the big pool. The sky got cloudy and the wind picked up, so I decided to go up to the lodge and have breakfast and see what happened.
And now I'm home in Fort Collins and it's late and I'm with my girls and Dennis is asleep upstairs, and things are good. And I can breathe again.