Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Farmer's Market

For two weeks running, I went to the Woodland Park Farmer's market. When I return there will be about 2 weeks left in their summer schedule.

This second time did not allow me to buy much, a couple of ears of corn and some of the fabulous tomatoes since I was leaving on Sunday right after. But I did take pictures and I did enjoy the conversations that I had with the various farmers and the burrito man.

The week before I had eaten a burrito by another vendor. It was fantastic, with her homemade salsa. To be fair....and I like to be fair....it was clearly incumbent on me to eat a burrito by the other vendor. I took his picture as he was making my burrito, a veggie one rather than the steak version. It was just too early in the morning for me to digest steak. He asked if I wanted it smothered and indicated the deep pot beside him. I peeked in and asked what that greenish gray concoction was. He called it his green chili gravy and lightly I scoffed, saying, " green chilies to a woman from Texas? You got to be kidding" His response was that the recipe came from his best buddy who lived in..........wait for it, Hallie....yes! El Paso!

So, when next I return, I shall try a burrito smothered in " green chili gravy" the recipe from El Paso. My stomach is rumbling as I even think about it. I would love to be sitting at the picnic table in the cool, dry air, chowing down on that burrito as we speak.

When I sat down to eat, there was a guy named Jerry there...eating, by the way, the smothered burrito which he said was delicious but with bite! Gee, it better have bite, eh? Anyway, he was interesting. Recently returned from 25 or so years in the Middle East with the US Diplomatic Corp, he was looking forward to retiring in his childhood home, Woodland Park. He told me something really interesting. Apparently Teller County, Colorado and Park County , Colorado have the greatest longevity rates of any county in the entire United States. How about that? I wonder if my time there will extend my life and in a good way. I hope so.

Besides having fun talking to the farmers...that really cool looking older man in the cowboy hat had picked out a canteloupe for me the previous week that was the size of a bowling ball and was the sweetest, most succulent canteloupe I had ever ever every eaten. But I digress, I also took pictures of the market as you can see. Now I was told by the burrito man that this is not just your regular farmer's market but the 19th Best Market in the country as rated by some organization that goes around to every farmer;s market that is advertised. The criteria is mostly focused on the food offered....is it really fresh and from local farms, is it really good...but also the craft fairs and the weather and other criteria. The ranking amazed me, not because its not an awesome market but I always thought of places like the northern east coast as having the best and here we were right up there in the top twenty. Go Woodland Park!!

I can't wait to get back....why doesn't summer up there last forever?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The fox

Its a beautiful morning...colder by ten degrees than yesterday morning with a wind out of the west that portends another thunderstorm later this afternoon. Thats good, I like the idea that the new plantings here are getting enough water for a strong start and the meadow is so green that I think much of the seeds planted to offset the construction will take root. Already on the straw blankets laid out there are wildflowers and grass poking up through the straw. I think later I shall take pictures of them to contrast with next spring and the spring after that.

The big excitement was last night around 9.30 or 10.00. I was sitting at the dining room table, looking out towards the Peak. It was pitch black outside but a movement caught my eye and there was a fox, its face right up to the glass. I grabbed my camera, trying not to spook him as he continued to explore around the terrace. All the glass is up now, but there is no gate so its easy access in and out. Taking a chance, I readied the camera and flipped on the outside light. It didn't seem to spook him and I snapped two shots before he sauntered off and away. They aren't the best, being through glass but still a pretty good shot all in all. I have attached them. Doesn't he have a pretty tail?

I am dreading the return to the heat and humidity. Its fun seeing it begin to cool down here. By the time I return in two weeks time or so, it will be fall and I suspect the aspen leaves will be turning. I will certainly take some pictures of that and post them.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


I thought I would post the pictures that I referenced in the last post.....

Moving IN

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

This place inspires inspiration or at least a cataloging of the small things that happen...miracles?....all day long.  I have been up in Colorado for almost 2 weeks, the longest that I have ever been " away" from work and I have been in the new house, Kan-ne-ga, for almost a week of it.

The first night was scary.  I admit it.  It is so quiet here and so very dark.  I have no draperies yet on the bedroom windows and being a city girl, I felt very exposed.  I couldn't sleep and when I did , it was fitful.  Then Ann came to visit and that helped.  When she left on Sunday, all the nervousness was gone.

The house exceeds my expectations.  After so many years of coming up here and imagining sitting out on the porch and watching the sun rise on Pike's Peak, to actually do it requires a hard pinching to ensure its not still a dream.  The glass is great for me, not so great for the birds.  Annie heard a big thump the other morning and a small sparrow had run into the glass and broken its neck.  Once we were sure that it was dead, it was given a small burial.  The very next day it happened again.  This one saw it coming and was only stunned.  It laid there for a bit, then righted itself and rested until it could think.  It figured out that it was exposed in the open and managed to hop under a chair on the terrace.  I have a picture of it out and then when it hid, I took the picture of it under the chair mesh.  Later, I captured it hopping on and trying out its wings.  Yay!   Its fine.

Saturday morning there were these two bucks who wandered up close to the terrace before bounding off across the meadow and what Annie and I thought was a huge hawk riding the thermals turned out to be an eagle.....it soared right past us near the terrace.  I have been seeing him around for days, hungrily eyeing the dozens of hummingbirds that hang out here, I guess, or maybe the tiny chipmunks which hide in the meadow grass.  I wonder if eagles eat other birds at all.  I guess I will have to look that up.

This week is an adventure of the oddest type.  Getting moved in, figuring out how to get rid of boxes and trash.  Hey!  I conquered the dump yesterday...learned the ropes!  Sounds silly but I was very proud of myself for having done so.

I find that I resent having to leave the house for anything.  I know that will likely wear off but now I go to run and errand and dash right back,  just walking around it, sitting here or there.  I will be glad when the rest of the furniture makes it and the walls slowly fill up with a bit of art work to warm the place and make it feel totally like home.

OH and the screens,  the few flies and wasps that make it in the house die quickly.  They don't understand the concept of doors and windows and hence can't figure out how to get out once in.  Each morning I have to sweep up or vacuum up some wee dead bodies around.  Oh well,  I confess that I don't get teary eyed over them the way I did over the sparrow.

Today is to be a quiet day with only a few things to do.  A trip or two into town.  I am already counting down how many days I have left here....much to do in Houston when I return, including closing on the new townhouse there.  I am excited about that as well!