This week Mel and I are moving into our permanent home. I mean that with all my heart. Permanent. God might have other ideas, but while we’re on this earth, I never want to undertake another move.
This past weekend, when I arrived in our Wyoming hometown for good, we took a drive up into Seminoe State Park. It was definitely Wyoming. You know, where the deer and the antelope play? Although, to be precise, what we call antelope in the United States are actually pronghorn. Totally different species.
Unlike the polished and safe state parks I was accustomed to in California and Missouri and Nebraska, Seminoe is literally a beaten track. We loved it.
Highway maintenance ends at Seminoe, and there are warning signs hinting that drivers should proceed at their own risk. With our all-wheel-drive, we proceeded. What we experienced was something I want to visit over and over in my dreams. It had rained, so the sandy dirt roads were pure mud. It was like driving through a foot of snow. The air had thickened with the scent of desert–sage and pine and moist earth. It was cloudy, not hot, and we could hear the rush of the North Platte River in many places.
Typically, I’m the one who likes to take chances while Mel takes precautions. This time it was Mel who asked if we could continue to drive more deeply into the wilderness of mountains and trees and river and hiking trails. I was more than happy to oblige. My main focus was always on the animals, because we were on open range, where not only deer and pronghorn range, but also cattle. Lots of them. How glad I was that we didn’t allow the deep mud to deter us, because we got to watch this beauty jump over this fence with the grace born of extremely strong muscles.
Not only did he turn back and pose for us, but he continued to pose so we could get the window down and take another, unobstructed photo without the mud splatters. As soon as we said “thank you,” he gamboled off.
We should be accustomed to this by now. After all, our new hometown has mule deer wandering the streets at all hours of the day and night. Drive anywhere in Wyoming country–and it’s all country–and you will see pronghorn nuzzling the sage or playing or taking a snooze when the wind gets too wild.
I’ve never taken for granted the beauty of God’s other creatures–be they wild animals or domesticated ones like our cats. God shows His majesty through His creation. It’s through immersing myself in this creation that I will once again engage my creativity and delve into that waiting manuscript.
How does God’s creation inspire you?
Does this mean you do not plan to come back to Missouri to live? Looks like beautiful country out there, but there is no place like MO. I wouldn’t want to move, too much stuff. And a whole lot of books. But do enjoy your new home. Enjoy your writings. Tressia Farmer
Thank you, Tressia. I spent my formative years in the far west, so this really feels like coming home. Mel is also from a western state. I don’t know if we could leave the mountains again. I’ll always love my friends and family in Missouri, though.