At the beginning of November I was standing through the liturgy of the service, probably one of a handful of times I ever made it. Indeed, Orthodox service is long, but oh, so beautiful. The singing of the choir for Holy liturgy is like Angels speaking from above. I cried, not the tears of sorrow, or joy, but the tears of my soul being touched.
Say what you will, Russia is not the last 70 years of 20th century everyone here despises so. It is over 1200 years of history, from 862, which adopted Christianity in 988, and from there on, Russian culture and Orthodox faith are two inseparable entities. We don't have to be "religious". It's in our blood, part of being.
And whether I stand on top of the mountain, alone, or walk into a Church, alone, it's there where I never feel lonely, where all the outside, normal, world with its worries, disappears, and I am given hope, not sure what for, and it's not even important. It's an eternal hope, however rarely I get to experience.
"The thing about hiking PCT...profound yet simple, was how few choices I had and how often I had to do the thing I least wanted to do. How there was no escape or denial. No numbing it down with a martini or covering it up with a roll in the hay...There were only two [option], and they were essentially the same. I could go back in the direction I had come from, or I could go forward in the direction I intended to go. The bull (the problem) could be in either direction...I could only choose between the bull that would take me back and the bull that would take me forward". Wild, by Cheryl Strayed.
This was a passage speaking to my heart. So, it is with high expectations I purchased tickets to a local performance theater for same author's another book's adaptation, "Tiny Beautiful Things". And it did not disappoint. Four actors (on a stage set at the Art Museum) spoke aloud letters from real readers to Sugar, a writer who wrote them back. I cried, pretty much, half of that play. Some hard life has been lived behind, and is still being in developing, and while all social media, even this blog, mostly portray all the good things, I, still, have so much absolutely heart-breaking experiences...and there's no end on sight. As they say, "life is a struggle, and then you die". Pretty dark, isn't it? Or, contemplating. Look on the bright side, seek it out...
And so I did. I did have plenty of good things. A friend from Austin flew to visit. We were not very close back in Texas, however, just like that, she promised to come - and she did. Thank you. It was so amazing to share my new home with her - and fall in love with it deeper. We live in such a great place! Three days was barely enough to scratch the ground. Incline and the city of Manitou, hike on Section 16 on cold morning, and Pioneers Museum, downtown and Fine Arts Museum (first time for her, wow!). Garden of the Gods, Pulpit Rock climb, Glen Eyrie castle. Walks, talks, Russian Church, Environmental Botanical center. I cooked Russian food. She bought lots of yarn so I can knit for her (and a tad for me). It was a good time, and it flew by in a blink of an eye.
Janice caught a good spell of the weather, because November really showed us, new transplants to Colorado, what winter is all about here. It dumped snow so many times! And it was cold! But, having being on a lock-down in Texas, I, the true Russian, missed snow and winter, and it didn't phase me one bit. In fact, it brought me so much joy! I ran when I could, walked when it was nearly impossible (a foot of fresh snow on the streets and no plowing), we shoveled snow, drove new Subaru carefully, and opened a very early ski season! The snow is just such a pure thing, it makes soul hope that one can start from the fresh new white page. Every day, every minute. Eternal pure hope.
We had our bestest ever neighbors for dinner, and I cooked so much Russian traditional food, in a longest time everything I could to offer! They are amazing people, active, funny, and as far as neighbors go - I haven't had that since I moved to US. That's a high standard to reach, and Jess and Josh (and Shae) are right there.
As far as the house goes, Larry has been spending his free time in the attic, quite literally. Removing old garbage thrown around and left behind, sealing little crack, re-doing all the pipes exhausts, putting boards and mesh...and we haven't even come close to putting actual insulation. I feel bad he's got so much work to do up there, in the horrible dust, but my husband is a perfectionist, and he is doing it with love our last home deserves. One thing for sure, after all said and done, there'll be no errors found up there.
We also had purchased new blinds for every room in the house to replace old ugly stuff left to us. And then the Tree Removal company came to cut down a tree in the front of the house (ruining the curb), one behind between Blue Spruce (junk Poplar that cuts nutrients and light to our State trees) and one HUMONGOUS Poplar in the back with dead branches (the size of trees themselves) hanging over our garage and neighbor's house, plus it was shading our Apple tree. That was an ordeal! And it's not done quite yet, another day of cutting ahead. Guys did an amazing job though!