By Eileen Majors
Summertime In The Mountains
Ever think of moving away from it all? It is a big serious move that should be given some careful consideration, or not?
Summertime in the mountains brings breezes full of fond memories, triggered by the familiar sounds and scents of our first trips up to the mountains from our Bay Area home nearly four decades ago. We would pack everything in to our old blue Chevy pick-up to take the 4 hour trek from home. We’d stop at rivers along the way to swim and cool off. Air conditioning then meant rolling down the windows and letting the breeze cool our wet clothes. Everything changed when we felt that mountain air. The traffic was gone; the heat was subdued and the cares of the city could wait until late Sunday evening when we would head back for the next work (and school) week. We loved the mountain life; we loved going out to help get firewood for my husband Mike’s brother Chuck, and reveled in the fact that is how he heated his home.
We came in every season. We came to play in the snow and happily warmed our boots by the fire over which we also cooked some of our best meals. It might have been a little more work than our city life but we loved every minute of it. We visited all the lakes and rivers nearby. It was so much fun, we began coming every weekend. The tiny town of Westwood greeted us with open arms and our weekend getaways were soon overtaken by our decision to leave all the traffic and congestion behind and move to greener pastures. It was the late ‘70’s and the city we were leaving was filling up fast. We were young and probably did not plan our escape as well as we could have. We quit our good jobs in the city and found new ones as soon as we arrived. My late husband Mike found his job the first day. Risky it seems moving away with no guarantees, but it seemed to make more sense every day. We rented a small house for $150 per month until buying our home a year later. Selling a small house down in the city gave us a very good start up here, as is the case for many today.
We have lived through tough times, fun times and trying times too. But living in a town filled with wonderful, amazing people that you know, made it all right. I live in a place where neighbors are friends and everyone is a neighbor.
Even our little town was affected by the economic downturn these past few years. Houses went empty and a new era will bring its own pioneers, willing to sacrifice a little hard work for a simpler way of life. It warms my heart to see every sold sign going up as others discover the quaint character of our small town, small schools and short commutes.