Two Months in the Mountains: Summer is Over

After receiving just .05 inches of rain in September, our compound is now enclosed in a dense fog the likes of which I have never seen in Colorado. If it weren’t for the song birds and the chattering, clucking, and tisking of the black squirrels, I would feel a bit weirded out being up here alone. I don’t have a lot of confidence that Trotsky or Hector would come to my defenses if zombies were to suddenly emerge from the mist swirling through the trees, though at least Trotsky is on the lookout.

The currently non-existent view across the canyon to the hills and houses on the other side.
The currently non-existent view out onto the city of Boulder and the valley beyond.
Trotsky, pretending to be a real watch dog.
Trotsky, pretending to be a real watch dog.

This weekend is reminder of how unaccustomed we are to mountain living and how we really need to get our butts in gear. We’ve wasted eight weekends of sunshine during which we could (should) have been preparing for winter and taking care of the property. We’ve waved to our neighbors who were diligently caring for their properties as we drove by for yet another night of fun on the town. But now the piles of firewood remain strewn across the property instead of being neatly stacked and covered, and they are inundated from the steady drizzle that began on October 1. The expansive wood decks, which desperately need to be restained, are soaked through as well.

Now, we certainly don’t live on the Little House on the Prairie or anything. If we’re ever in a life-threatening situation up here in the winter, we’ll just strap on our snowshoes or skis, put Trotsky’s booties on him, and we’ll all slog through the 6 miles of canyon roads into town. It’s really not that big a deal. If we need dry firewood, we’ll just order some and have it delivered. But this sudden and drastic change is weather is a good indication to us that we need to be a little smarter about our attitudes towards our newly chosen milieu.

A good start would be to finally make that trip to Costco we keep talking about to stock up on canned goods, dry goods, and meat. Our freezer contains the same ice cube trays for making cocktails it always contained when we lived downtown…and nothing else. Neither of our pets have more than a week’s supply of food in the house right now. The power went out for a few hours last week and even though we have a generator, if there’s no oil in the generator, it doesn’t do us a lot of good. Lesson learned there already.

It looks like we’ll have a streak of ten dry days coming up starting on the ninth, so we have one last chance to get cracking before the first snowfall. Time to set aside the barbecues, the trips to Nebraska, to Buffalo, to Chicago, to Grand Junction, the nights out in Boulder, the nights out in Denver, the girls nights, the couples date nights, the birthday dinners, the rock concerts, the writers groups, and everything else that has occupied our time over the last eight weeks. There is so much we want to see and do, but we have to remind ourselves that we are going to be living here for the next decade. There will be time for everything but the house needs to be a priority. Well, at least until the zombies finally show up.

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