Driving into Utah, there was rain all over the horizon, but my little VW somehow managed to avoid ever actually passing through it. I arrived in Salt Lake City on Saturday evening - a somewhat last minute decision to visit a couple of my parents' old friends. They are the kind of couple who has always inspired me, in every way - they have fabulous personalities that complement each other, seemingly boundless amounts of energy, delightful senses of humor...they read a ton of books, spend a great deal of time outdoors...eat lots of delicious, healthy, home-cooked food...and have a stunning house nestled at the bottom of a mountain, with huge glass windows that let in lots of natural light and give a spectacular view. What's not to love?
This was my first time to SLC in the summertime. I've been out here several times before, but it looked a little more like this:
Not that I'm complaining...but it was stunning to see "the city in the valley" steeped in greenery (heavy rainfall this June in Utah) and sunlight. And lots of it! This time of year, sunset doesn't really happen until around 9:30 p.m., and the sky retains at least some light until at least an hour later. I took full advantage of the beautiful weekend day and spend nearly all of it outside.
Bill and I spent Sunday morning hiking partway up Mt. Olympus - a rigorous hike that accomplished two things: (1) Reinforced my sense of unbelievable thrill that I'm going to live in the western half of this country (65 degree summers, no humidity, mountains all over, outdoorsy adventures to be had absolutely everywhere you go), and (2) Made me feel woefully out of shape. My leg muscles were trembling by the end of our hike. But...the foliage was beautiful, the babbling, snowmelt creeks music to my ears. Sometimes I forget just how happy and alive the outdoors make me feel.
My having given up vegetarianism since the last time I was here was also cause for great celebration. We grilled some yummy chicken quesadillas on their back patio for lunch once we got back...then onto an hour and a half yoga session with Nancy, which was great. Yoga is another thing (along with being on an early schedule, reading books for pleasure, and taking time to cook really great food) that's been missing the last few years of my life, and which I'm eager to reclaim once I start establishing my life and routine in Seattle. But first...onward to Montana!