Dakota, and Home

I’m re-reading Dakota by Kathleen Norris.

Her book makes me think of Granby, Colorado, the place I lived when I read the book for the first time. Her “Dakota” was a place that was barren, isolated and windy, but there was art, magic and spirit in this place. South Dakota came alive for me from her stories about small town life on the prairie.  

Dakota, A Spiritual Geography

Norris brought a spirit to a place with her poetry and story telling. She made a life as a writer there. In a place where most people would think as isolating, she found a life. I felt that way about living in Granby. Granby is a small town (population 2,000) and most people would imagine it to be stifling and not very fulfilling to live there; I thought the opposite. I loved the isolation – being surrounded by wilderness. I found joy in the same walk up the mountain behind my house everyday with my dogs. I loved the quiet and beauty of small town living. It was my home for five years.

Dakota, A Spiritual Geography

This is the landscape where I live these days. 

The trails near my house in Concord NH
Concord NH Population 43,000

Next February I will be living in New Hampshire for three years. Three years is around the time I start looking for a different place; always needing a change. 

The funny thing is – I kind of like living here. I’m happy with my job and the people I have met. The interesting thing is – those two things rarely happen to me at the same time. 

As long as I can remember I’ve always wanted to be out west. Or at least living in the mountains. When I traveled to Colorado this summer every place I spent time in made me want to live there: Littleton, Leadville, Copper Mountain. I started making plans in my head to move back. The mountains of Colorado just seemed to jive with everything about my personality. But then, I’d get home and not think about it again. 

I’ve been thinking about the idea of home lately and what it means to me. I’ve been thinking of staying.

I’ve always said – home is where my dogs are.

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