Firework in Steamboat

Yesterday it hit me, for the first time, that we had actually ridden to Colorado from New York City. I still can’t tell if it’s been a long time or no time at all. Several times on this trip I’ve just felt like a plastic bag drifting through the wind, being swept from one coast to the other and not being able to experience the journey, just wanting to start again.
But starting again isn’t an option at this point. Sometimes this team feels like a house of cards; one blow from caving in. Tensions have been high, but ever since crossing the Missouri each day has been better than the last.
For the first time, we went several days with no phone service. Not being able to get in touch with anybody was an experience that showed that we were really in the west, like being buried deep, six feet under when you scream and no-one hears a thing.
But if there’s anything this trip has taught me, it’s that there’s still a chance. All the people that we’ve talked to have a spark in them, and they just have to ignite that light and let it shine. When it happens, then they can own the night like the Fourth of July.
Speaking of the Fourth of July, yesterday was the Fourth of July. Independence Day in Steamboat Springs starts with a parade at 10am, mostly cowboys and a few marching bands, though there were a few gems – namely a team of older women dancing with chainsaws. They made the parade feel like it wasn’t a waste of space. It was very original and couldn’t be replaced by any other act. After the parade was a barbecue and a trip to hot springs. After the springs came the fireworks show, accompanied by a lightning show. The rain was tough, but we have to remember what the future holds – after a hurricane comes a rainbow.
Between the hot springs and the fireworks, we attempted to re-enter the stayover to watch the show but found it locked. Maybe we’re the reason why all the doors are closed, and we just had to open one that could lead us to the perfect road. This door led us to a street corner on the Yampa River a few blocks away from the stayover, where we watched the firework show.
Regardless of the stayover setbacks, this has probably been the biggest culture shock of my life. We’ve been going through the west for a while now, but I never really stopped to experience the culture. And just like the lightning bolts outside, my heart will blow and when it’s time I’ll know that we just have to ignite the light inside all of us and let it shine. Then we can own the night like the Fourth of July in Steamboat. Because we’re all fireworks and we are showing the whole country what we’re worth. I4K is even brighter than the moon.

Boom. Boom. Boom.

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