Mountaineers (Part Two)

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Mountaineers (Part One) continued… With a new sense of direction, we headed to Breckenridge for the surprise I just KNEW my better half would enjoy: a film festival.

Marriage has really highlighted our similarities and differences though I suppose life with someone, romantic or otherwise would lead to the same conclusion. In most areas, Robert is the polar opposite from me. His brain is wired very technical. He enjoys silence and alone time. He sees the world in math equations and science happenings. My brain is wired very fluid and is based around humanity. I loves large crowds and incessant conversation. I see the world as color, poetry, song and art. Yet we both do love cooking, writing, reading and films. Oh do we love films.

When we first started talking, one of our earliest conversations was discussing films. I made films in my undergrad. He studied films in his. One conversation about Hitchcock and the genius of Saul Bass and I was hooked. This man and I connected instantly. This love of film has been a steady rhythm throughout dating and marriage. When the opportunity to feed our souls with art cinema approached, how could I ever say no?

Breckenridge was chilly that day. Fall was upon us but there was a chill in the air that whipped through my cardigan to feast on my bones. Mountain towns have a way of doing this. I had tickets for us to see the Morality Series which consisted of five films all centered around morality (nothing like taking it easy, right?). As we cozied up into our theatre seats, the lights dimmed on cue and the films began. There were questions and answers with the directors in attendance and sheets to rate the films as with most festivals. Yet what I wholeheartedly needed and experienced was the awe of art unfolding before my eyes. The flicker of the projector lights as the speakers hummed with the music selections had us begging for more.

After the five films, we meandered around Breckenridge, growing colder by the moment and rapid fire discussed everything about the films. Our silence from that morning was broken by exclamations of brilliant lighting, storylines, costumes, music, the morality of each film and so much more. Our conversation had an awakening and after effect was incredible.

All marriages ebb and flow. Ours is no different. I married my best friend and we have a wonderful life together. Yet like with anyone else, life builds up and sometimes you spend less time with your other half. It isn’t that you love them any less but after an exhausting and long work day, explaining why it was exhausting and long feels like more work than it is worth. Must I share every detail to connect with my better half if explaining the story would take so much time that it no longer even matters? I just want to go to sleep. This adds up over time and, if you’re like me, you have an arsenal of stories and experiences to share but life happens and it is no longer relevant. Missed opportunities. Missed moments.

Because of how our year has been with a myriad of factors and relationships with family changing, we needed a retreat to get balance back. As if an epiphany needed an entire weekend to fester just to lead us to discover it. Dammit we will! To “feed our souls” sounds so pompous despite our souls actually being fed. Stimulated on artistic discussion and analysis, we had it. The breathtaking mountains during our hike through Aspen groves and around beautiful lakes with the decadence of delicious sleep and fresh roasted coffee combined with the silky cold air created a masterpiece. I can’t say Nirvana but it was something close. We were enlightened together again. We had the shared life experience of awe and beauty that could not be forced but had to just be.

After the festival, I took Robert to a new brewery to for a tasting. From there we headed back to the condo, ordered a pizza and settled in for a game of Catan while the world around us grew cold with the night. We didn’t sleep nearly as long that evening but I can honestly say we didn’t need it. It was a newfound energy and purpose. It was exactly what I wanted and didn’t realize how much we needed. I guess that’s why people keep returning to the mountains; you never know what you will discover when you are there.

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