As my time in Great Falls is nears its end, I reflect on my experience and find it pleasant. Sure, the gray sky dumped a few inches of snow on the already melting snow from the previous storm a week before we arrived, and the temperature dropped into a range the Louisiana winters seldom even come close too, but I get to leave, and that makes the weather bearable and beautiful. The rugged scenery is beautiful and evokes thoughts of the pioneer days when things were simpler, but not easier. I can see the settlers as they climbed from their wagon to snag a buffalo burger from the local McDonalds and decided to stay. It obviously was in the summer, and I can’t fathom why they didn’t move on to warmer climes once they realized how cold and snowy it would be, I know I’m not the only one to have pondered this conundrum. I guess we aren’t as rugged as our predecessors and I’m okay with that. If it wasn’t for technology and modern conveniences, I wouldn’t be able to see and experience the incredible scenery around me and spit my thoughts about it for the world to read. The bone chilling wind blows through my slacks, causing my wedding tackle to crawl as far back inside me as possible, and impatient drivers tailgate me as I drive on a sheet of ice and try not too notice that I can no longer see their headlights because they are so close to me. It’s just another average day in the chilly north, I’ve been on the opposite side myself. I lived in Cheyenne, Wyoming for seventeen years and as much as I hate to admit it, I was the one on someone’s ass as I tried to make it back from lunch on time, or hurried about my life, trying to live it as fast as possible for some reason. We live and we learn, and these days I try to slow down and do much more living. I get it now. I understand why we slow down as we age. We get tired of being pushed all day long and say, “to hell with it, I’m not going to be in a hurry anymore, now go around me if you don’t like doing the speed limit.” I am slowing down, of that I am sure, but I still work and things still need to get done, so I can’t slow down as much as I would like, not yet. My days of traveling the country, seeing the sights, and waking up to new sights all the time are still ahead of me, but I’m working on it.
Reflections of Great Falls