Last weekend, our son, Evan and his lovely wife, Isabel, joined us for a beautiful late afternoon amidst the golden meadows of Moraine Park in Rocky Mountain National Park (west of our hometown, Fort Collins, Colorado). We knew we would want to be there at times when the sonorous bugling of elk herds, led by the long-antlered bull elk, would be present in full concert!
As soon as we arrived there with our picnic dinner in hand, we witnessed the elk herd “family” ambling closer — bugling all the while to other more distant herds — an experience that does not occur every year. Hence, our being there and then was a blessed rarity!
In the evening, the setting sun brought dancing light and shadows to the valley floor; then later, the Dusk made way for a clear, naturally moonlit sky. A vista on the horizon framed the park’s two distant snow-capped mountains, Longs Peak and Mount Meeker.
Rocky Mountain National Park includes some of the highest mountains in the continental United States. In those high elevations, a windswept land above the trees provides expanses that bridge both sides of the Continental Divide. Therein is tundra, alpine lakes, and forested habitats for a wide range of acclimated plants and animals.
The Four Elements — Water, Air, Earth, and Fire — are in full force there:
Yearly cycles of iconic summer thunderstorms and persistent winter winds continually shape a majestic mountainous landscape on this one-of-a-kind place on Earth.
And not to be forgotten, Fire — this year, in Colorado, as well as various other places, fire is forcefully impressing itself on all of Mother Earth’s Realms: Animal, Vegetable, Mineral, and the multi-faceted Realm of Humanity.
Closer to home for us here in Northern Colorado is Horsetooth Reservoir, just west of Fort Collins. It collects in the foothills above the town, on the western side of the Dakota Hogback, which borders the reservoir along its eastern side.
Overlooking the reservoir from 1800 feet above, and just to the west, is Horsetooth Mountain — a summit in the foothills of the Front Range of the Colorado Rockies. The 7,259-foot peak is located in the Horsetooth Mountain Open Space, a distance that puts it 7 miles west of downtown Fort Collins, and at an altitude high enough for Melanie and me to gaze at it every evening from the front yard of our blessed home!
And much closer to me, closer than anything else, is a view — not of a mountain, but from a Mountain — A metaphorical Mountain view that feels “closer than hands and feet”.
This Mountain view is an internal process that involves a conscious outlook on Life — one that is available, ready, and waiting for any one of us who chooses to be self-governed enough — in heart, mind, and soul — to see, sense, recognize, and acknowledge… What?
… The Many Mountains of Blessings — The Opportunities, The Successes and Abundances — The beautiful and empowering Gifts given to One from Others, And One’s Uniquely Precious and Absolutely Needed Gifts meant to be Given to Others.
In this wise, I have found from personal experience that such an undertaking is so much easier to engage than one might think. Yet, having it intact and safely in hand will take a steady and assured persistence to maintain it.
A first step for me moving forward was to commit — step by step, moment by moment, day by day — to Doing my very Best with the various Things that come up for me; And Giving my Best to the Ones who venture close to me.
And thankfully, I have discovered that my Best — nothing more, nothing less, moment by moment, day by day — is indeed what is perfect all around!.