Best Place to Live in the Wild West
I feel a little like that proud Mother who can only see the positive in my own child despite the realities that we are all human. Truth be told, this is how I am feeling about my community right now. This last week has been eventful.
My family and I were just returning from a vacation we enjoyed with friends at lake Tahoe and witnessed other close friends tie the knot atop of Squaw Valley. Both places were incredibly gorgeous and filled with laughter and good friends but our trip was cut short on our return to Seattle when I happened to scroll through some Facebook postings and saw that a neighbor had just exclaimed”Somewhat disconcerting when the Smokejumpers are jumping above your house and three fire trucks are sitting on the road.” What? Did I read that correctly? Turns out that 4 smokejumpers landed on our hill to fight a blaze that had been ignited by a lighting strike. Have any of you felt that sinking feeling when something happens and you are too far away to do anything about it…personally?
We cut our visit with Grammie short and hustled (read: 4 hours) home over the North Cascade Scenic (not today) Highway to take care of our home and animals. All along the way our friends were keeping us updated, <I love the internet> on the positive aspects to the event “they didn’t send a whole smokejumper crew just 4 guys so that is a good sign” said Sarah Berns. Our neighbor, Hannah Dewey, gave us the hourly play by play complete with photos texted to us of the blaze that her smokejumper husband, Patrick, was fighting behind our home. They dug fire lines along with ground and air support teams to make sure the already brittle and dry sage and bunch grasses didn’t ignite with a gust of 90 degree August air.
We had luck on our side, the winds died down and an early response from a seasoned fire crew saved our bacon. All is well and we quickly returned to our bucolic country lifestyle.
So grateful we are to the men and women who put themselves in harm’s way for their fellow men, women and children. You all make a difference in our lives and we are thankful, thankful for the nation wide community of firefighters who travel all fire season, thankful to our community for keeping us updated and thankful for our community beyond who checked in.
That country lifestyle is just part of why we live here, but I am sure we all have a part of that wherever we live. It’s the individual who chooses to make a difference.
Have you ever left a community event feeling inspired, maybe with that Ah ha! moment of satisfaction “this is why we live here”? Each year I search out Sunset Magazine’s annual “best towns to live in” issue, curious to see who out there is raving about their slice of paradise.
Community makes a place and each of us has the ability to enrich ours, and in so doing, make life just a bit sweeter.
The other night I had one of those Ah ha! moments at Spring Creek Ranch‘s first Celestial Cinema evening of the summer. The stars aligned and I felt like I had just walked into that idyllic country life set only seen in Hollywood.
83 degrees, a slight breeze, familiar faces, local eateries selling their goods, children playing on the lush green lawn. Listening to friends connecting and catching up by sharing summer vacation stories. Ahh… this is why we live here.
It is the people that make the place.
So fittingly, let’s collectively create a Recipe for Community. Like the story of stone soup, tell me the qualities you feel make a place special to you. Just add your ingredients in the comments and I’ll update the recipe.
Here are a few thoughts to start…
A group of dedicated people
A desire to connect
How about a shout out for the 70 firefighters working the fire in the mtns above Falls Creek!
Organized by the North Cascades Smokejumpers, The Rocking Horse Bakery is proud to have been able to provide an air drop of muffins, scones and other tasty treats for the crew’s breakfast this am!
A sign of community and neighbors making a difference