1. The Civilians’ This Beautiful City is out (more on that anon).
2. I was in NYC last week, and will be in DC this week.
In the past, that combination has been a recipe for severe discontentment on my part: reports on Colorado-Springs-as-religious-right-enclave (they are legion) often inspire a desire to flee, and traveling to good cities compounds the problem. We moved back here from Boston three years ago, and have spent not a few evenings tinkering with plans to live elsewhere.
But we keep staying, mostly for the best and most obvious reasons–family, friends, affordability, the climate, family, the mountains, and family. Even so, my wandering eye keeps wandering.
In January I decided to try to put an end to my anxiety of place. How? By cultivating local-ness. By finding things I love about being here, and loving those things better and more. Colorado Springs is, after all, as much of a home as I ever had–I went to junior high and high school here, and my first post-college job was here. My wife and I were married in Monument, just north of the Springs, and when we needed to leave Boston for more sustainable living, it wasn’t hard to figure out where to go. We, like loads of people here, hate the stigma against the place fostered by its (MINORITY, but very loud) evangelical presence, but again: family, friends, mountains, climate, affordability.
I digress. Localness–I decided to cultivate localness. And that’s what I’ve done. More and more, I buy local. I visit the same places again and again. I run the same trails. I see the same people. And as I do, I create a running list of reasons why Colorado Springs ain’t all bad, is actually quite good, and if I hate the culture, part of the problem is that I’m only seeing one of the city’s many cultures. And after all (hat tip: Andy Crouch), if I really want the culture to be different, I need to create more culture.
So, herewith, I’ll start posting items on that list as they occur to me or get added.
#1: Margaritas at Pine Creek Farmers Market
My friend Jeff asked if we planned to visit the farmers market on Saturday morning, and we did, but not the one at Margaritas, which is a fabulous old locally owned restaurant. So after stopping by the farmers market in Monument (not in full swing yet), we went to Margaritas and got lost for a couple hours. The Acme Bluegrass band was playing, and it was a pickin’ and a singin’ good time. Bloody Marys, mimosas, and more flowed for the brunch crowd, and some Colorado College kids were there selling transplants from the college’s garden (I bought a couple tomato plants to add to my plot). A farmer from Canon City was selling yummy greens, and…well, if you’ve been to a farmers market, you can imagine what else was there and why it made for an uber-good morning.
Can’t wait for next Saturday.