I had an interesting experience today, and it gave me some pause for reflection.  Being from western Pennsylvania, there are hills everywhere, but you can’t tell, because you are stuck in them all of the time.  You can rarely see more than a quarter mile in front of you, and over time, it starts to close off your perception and sense of scale.

As a kid, I was lucky enough to travel frequently to other parts of the country.  Many people like the beach, but not me, I always liked the mountains.  One of my favorite places to go was to Colorado, and get to see the rocky mountains.  This of course despite being incredibly altitude sick most of the time, but I still enjoyed it.  I loved being able to see the mountains stretching up higher than I could ever reach, as well as being able to look out to the very edge of the world.  I always assumed it was the mountains that were appealing to me.

When we moved to Tucson, it seemed perfect.  There are mountains all around the city, so I got to look out from the front of my house every day and see them rising up in front of me.  I always thought that it was uplifting to look out and see them rising up in front of me, just like when I traveled as a kid.  So one of the things that I made a priority when we were moving was that I wanted to live somewhere with mountains.  That was one of the reasons the Pacific Northwest appealed to me.  Lots of mountains.

Well, this part of Kentucky has no mountains.  At all.  In fact, it is very similar to western Pennsylvania with both it’s hills and it’s sight lines.  I missed the mountains, or at least I thought I did.

Well today I had cause to travel to a slightly different part of Kentucky, that was about 45 minutes to the northwest from here.  This was far enough to take me out of the hill country, and into more of the plains type terrain.  It was quite a bit flatter, but suddenly I could see much further than I have been able to for the last few weeks.

Suddenly I felt different.  My horizons were stretching further.  Even though there were no mountains to pull my eyes up, I still liked searching out over the plains to see what I could see.  Several years ago I would have felt like a bug on a plate being that stretched out in the open, but this time I didn’t.  I enjoyed not feeling boxed in.  So perhaps it wasn’t the mountains that I really enjoyed.  Perhaps it was simply the feeling of being on the edge of an infinite horizon with no place to go but forward.  It was an interesting feeling, and one that I am glad I am able to capture here in Kentucky.

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