The Neighborhood

Yesterday Bear and I took off in the evening for the first real walk in the hood this summer. We did a little one a few weeks back, but this one was for real. It’s been a couple of years since that was our routine. 2020, really. It was interesting to see the changes; the dump houses that have been fixed up, the nice houses that have been dumpified. I don’t know where the dogs live anymore so I was a little wary about where we walked, but it was fine. My goal was the golf course, but, as it was Sunday, they were watering. Sunday is the “Everyone in Monte Vista can water” free-for-all. A few houses that once had nice lawns have replaced the grass with rocks. I’m tempted, but it would be so hot in my front yard if I did that. Shudder. The yellow rose — the Harison Rose — that came west with settlers loves it it here. Mine is blooming more passionately than ever as are all the others up and down the streets. It’s a wonderful rose that spreads like crazy with stems and branches that are covered with thorns. Ultimately, the way I’m letting it go, it will be a hedge across the front of my house.

In past years, on our evening walks, we’ve seen a lot of kids out on bikes, some with their parents, some on their own, racing around like dragonflies, making a BMX course out of the high school parking lot and campus, but last evening, there were no kids. My town was very subdued, very quiet. In a way, that was OK because it meant people weren’t out with their dogs. In another way, it was just a reminder of how our world has changed. I keep hoping it’s just my perception of the world that’s changed, but I’m afraid it might be more than just me.

More hearings are going on right now. I’m not tuning in. Yesterday I thought of Watergate — I watched all those hearings and hated every minute of it. I was also just out of university and looking for a job. It was hot, just like now, and my Juvenile X was angry all the time. In Boulder in summer there weren’t a lot of jobs because a sizable portion of the population (university students) had left town, the lower-level jobs, service, etc., were gone with them. It took me two months to find one, my job at Head Ski.

Thinking about the events on January 6, I realize I know what happened. Maybe not the details, maybe not enough to convict anyone in a court of law, but I saw the whole thing as many of us did. It’s colored my life in unimaginable ways — naturally as the event itself was unimaginable, the volume of it as a measure of where our country is right now? Beyond measuring in decibels. If I’d been in charge of that shit-show, I’d have cuffed Trump then and there and hauled him off to Homeland Security. SO…

“Hold your powers together for something good and let everything go that is for you without result and is not suited to you.” Goethe, Conversations with Eckermann

20 thoughts on “The Neighborhood

  1. love the yellow rose and an eventual hedge would be lovely. I am watching, even though I know, as you do, what happened that day. but with every word or action I see, it gives me a tiny bit more hope that something will happen to force the orange one to atone for what he’s done to his country.

    • I will probably watch later or wait for Heather Cox Richardson’s summary. I love your word, “Atone.” That’s exactly what he needs to do. What he has done goes far beyond a mere crime.

  2. I’m also not watching the hearings. They would only send my BP soaring. The owners of our apartment complex have not taken up our lawn, but over the years of drought unknown species of wild ground cover plants have filled in small areas where grass once grew. I’ve read that there are drought-resistant grasses that could replace your thirsty lawn, instead of rocks. Love the Harison Rose.

    • I’m letting whatever grass doesn’t mind not being watered take over and I planted a test patch of wildflowers. I also have an alfalfa plant that is loving life! Wild asters have moved in, too. I think it’s in a period of evolution out there. I just want to keep my flower beds. I agree about the BP. On some back burner all this is simmering and it’s very uncomfortable — I think a lot of us are feeling that.

  3. I’ve been so busy today that I wasn’t able to watch. And the same is going to be true for the rest of the week. I’m downloading the video and will watch at my leisure. I think the committee knows that there was treason by 45 but they are going to have to let the courts mete out any punishment. Their main objective is to try to make that clear to the majority of Americans.
    As for the wonderful walk with Bear, I’m kind of sad that there weren’t the usual commotion of kids on bikes and the attendant sounds of play. Our world has changed and continues to evolve post-pandemic…

    • My new thing is to be in the front yard more. I like people and I like my town even if their politics aren’t mine and the pandemic really broke us in a way. I ended up watching the hearings later and the case laid out today was that Trump KNEW but decided to move forward with the “big lie” — essentially attempting to start a civil war. I am very sad to have that suspicion (of mine) confirmed.

  4. On a tangent again, I began to think about lawns and rocks. Often, we don’t grow lawns here, but plant a tree with a spreading canopy for shade. Usually local grasses take root under it. It is often straggly and looks sickly, but it is actually hardy. Since you live very close to a wildlife refuge, there must be local grasses and herbs, wildflowers even, which like the ground. There are groups in cities here who are trying to rewild abandoned parts of towns and cities, and they are full of knowledge about local trees, shrubs, grasses, herbs. I’m sure that Colorado will have a few such groups.

    • Not a tangent at all! We do have groups like that. I believe in that kind of re-wilding. I’m living on a property where someone — or a lot of someones over the 100 years it’s been here — has cultivated a lawn so it’s very established deep down. I don’t want to tear up the yard. The dogs have torn up the rest of the yard…

      The front yard is very typically American. I’m not doing that. Last year some native wild asters moved in and they have spread and will keep spreading — they have pretty purple flowers and the bees and butterflies love them. In a dead spot I’ve planted wildflowers — the question there is how will they deal with the short growing season? I think the seeds that belong here will thrive. I got seeds that belong to this area, but the altitude changes that a little bit. I’m also letting whatever grass can survive this comparative non-watering take over. I don’t know what it will be.

      The area where I live has been cultivated one way or another for so long, It’s a process. Others here have done what I’m doing and it came out well. So I’m hopeful.

      In the back, aspens are trying to take over which is a very bad thing — that’s a constant battle that I should probably fight harder because they LOVE the sewer line.

  5. We’re looking at California native plants for our back yard. Wife has kind of a thing for grass in the front. We have buffalo grass but even that needs water or it goes dormant half the year.

    Too many bad things all at once. I could give you a 20 point list of things that would be economic crises, natural and unnatural disasters, national tragedies, wars, and national shames. And there isn’t one damn thing I can do about any of them.

    So I decided to test out my injured knee and went on a hike. Met a half dozen guys who were part of a larger group trying to thru-hike the PCT. I wish them luck. There are 500 miles of it closed due to wildfires. To be passing thru here this late means they got a late start or something delayed them. The next hundred miles are going to be miserable and many of the water sources have dried up.

    • I’m looking at an orange sky right now because of smoke from a smallish local fire and bigger fires in AZ and NM.

      Up in the Lagunas one day I met three guys hoping to do the PCT. One was like a Marine. The next guy was the guy you’d want to go with — he was having a wonderful time. And the third guy? He hadn’t been able to pack his stuff or rolls his bedroll that morning. His shoes were not going to last and I saw him jumping ship at Julian. They were about the same age as I was at the time — 57 or so. I think they were pretty OK for their start but I figured only one of them would make it. Either the first guy or the second, and if the second guy dropped out it would be because the first guy was a Nazi. East coast guys.

      And yeah — way way way way too many bad things at once. I’m really glad we all here have this place to talk to each other.

      • There’s a book you should read if you haven’t. It is “A Walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson. Better than the movie, which was actually fairly good.

        It would be difficult to make a bad movie with Robert redford.

        • I love that book. It’s wonderful — and I really enjoyed the film. I’ve watched it a few times to get out of the blues of our times. That song that obnoxious girl sings is THE song I hate most in the world. It’s perfect and perfect casting.

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