I could not tell you the last time I genuinely felt delight. Not “oh that is nice” but genuine delight. There were a bunch of things today, our first full day in the cabin, that were nice, fun, phenomenal, awesome etc… But the delight came from… Hummingbirds. More on that later. We are staying, courtesy of a kind friend, at 10,000 feet above Twin Lakes Colorado.

Good morning Ellingwood Ridge. La Plata Peak is just out of view.

Let me put that in perspective: The highest point in the lower 48 is Mount Whitney in Ca at 14,494 feet. The highest point in Colorado and the second highest point in CONUS is Mount Elbert which casts a shadow over the cabin, at 14,439 feet. The highest pass in the USA is Independence Pass at 12,095 feet, a mere 3 ish miles up the road from where we are. The air is rare. This is a special place. Dawn came clear and cool. After 1,300 miles of travel, we still had unpacking and organizing to do.

Once the cabin was ship-shape Louise and River went for a walk up an old ore mining rail line to explore and get some views of the valley and surrounding peaks while I fiddled with the solar powered 4G connection (again, more on that later, it is a sad/good fact with all that is going on I can only take a 90% vacation. With great opportunity comes great responsibility). The cabin we are staying with is replete with history. Appropriate given its owner who is the master of.

A special place.

One thing Bob did not tell us about until we rolled into his property was the Hummingbirds. He pointed out the feeder and said they were fun to watch, and keep an eye on the orange ones, they are bullies. We had seen a Hummingbird or two on our property in Chicago and were mesmerized by them. We do not get Hummingbirds in Australia. They are endemic to the “new world” of the Americas. Louise refilled the feeder with “Aussie Strength” food and the party got started. From being amazed by one lone feeder coming in we were soon delighted (yes, there is that word) by a spectacle of what we coined “Jewelry birds” (we also had Taser Bugs… I will leave that to the reader’s imagination).  What a perfect day to rest and build red blood cells in our acclimatization to the roof of America in what truly is a paradise.

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