Our Everyday Adventures

We are not adventurers by choice but by fate – Van Gogh

A Change in Venue

Post by:  Jake & Veronica
11/6/11

When thinking about what to write about next, Veronica suggested, “Write about making a huge life changing decision that takes you to a new state where you don’t know anyone.”  As most everyone knows, we’ve relocated to the High Rockies of Colorado.  Leadville to be exact.  Home to roughly 2,800 people, Leadville sits at 10,200 foot elevation, higher than any other incorporated city in the US.  Adjusting to the elevation just takes a matter of time.  Adjusting to “small town life” where we know almost no one, certainly takes more than just time.

Jake’s Perspective:

Adjusting to “small town life” has been fairly easy for me.  I work with several people around my age.  For the most part, I get to work in the office as much as I want, or go out and work in the field as much as I want.  My new job is a ton of fun, and I really like the people I’m working with.  The weekends are exciting and are filled with exploring our new surroundings.  I’m hosting a poker night with a few guys from work; and for the most part, I’ve found the adjustment to “small town life” to be fairly easy.  The hardest part about the move for me has been losing “residency” and not being able to afford to hunt or fish as an “out of state” person.  Apart from hunting and fishing, I’ve really been enjoying our new surroundings; collecting firewood, biking and running the extensive trail network, and taking the occasional road trip into “the city” (Denver).  Mud season has been a little boring at times, but the snow keeps flying and it’s only a matter of time till the backcountry is skiable.

Veronica’s Perspective:

Moving has certainly been an out-of-my-comfort-zone experience.  Not to say that I’ve lived a sheltered life, it’s just worked out that up until now, all of my worldly exploration has come from short vacations, not long-term moves.  A part of me has always wanted to move to a place where I don’t know anyone – not sure why I cast that spell upon myself but I certainly got my wish!

In the month we’ve been in Leadville, the few people I’ve interacted with are very nice.  The only problem is that I have to force myself out of the house to meet anyone.  My job is a work-from-home deal.  I’ve been working remotely for a boutique PR firm for two and a half years.  The flexibility of my work was a huge blessing in regards to pursuing this new opportunity for Jake.  I wouldn’t have to try to find a job in such a limited market.  Unfortunately, it also means that I don’t have a built-in network to meet new friends.

Luckily for me, Jake’s built-in network has also welcomed me in many ways.  One of his co-workers and I have gone for a few runs, which has been great since it gives me some girl-time but also helps show me the extensive trail system around town.  I was also invited to play on the college’s community-league volleyball team.

But one of the things I learned quickly is that I can’t sit at home and wait for my new community to open their arms and welcome me into their lives.  If I want to be embraced by the community, I have to reach out and embrace the community myself.  So the first week we officially settled back into our routine, I took a leap of faith, made a phone call and signed up to get involved.  Now, Wednesday nights I volunteer at the middle school after-school program, helping with homework and a free community meal.

A few weeks ago, we treated ourselves to lunch at the Chinese restaurant. And although I am normally underwhelmed by the words of wisdom on my fortune cookie – this time I was pleasantly surprised.  “Sometimes travel to new places leads to great transformations.”

How poignant.  How true.  Here we are in a new place – meeting new people, exploring new places.  And although it will still take a while for Leadville to feel like “home” and for us to make a handful of great friends, this is an adventure that will no doubt grow us, change us, and transform us.  By the way… That’s our Halloween costumes.  Can you guess what we are?

 

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