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by Frank Shortt
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Why A Mountain Home?
It is the dream of each urban dweller to someday have a mountain home, or even a cabin, to have peace and serenity
in their hurry-scurry lives. They work their fingers to the bone, scrimping here, scrimping there to save up for a down payment for
their little rural paradise!
They set aside a little money each payday for that home away from home. “Oh, if we could just have
a little nest in the Sierras, we’d have peace and solitude galore!” The wife cuts back on meats, buys day old bread, “so what if the
veggies are a little wilted. They cook just the same and become limp when they are cooked!” She declares! The children wear hand-me-downs
from the Goodwill store. “We all have to sacrifice for our goal!” The father emphatically implores! They can hardly wait to be able
to kiss the city-life goodby, even if it is only for a little stay in the peace and quiet of the country!
Finally, the day arrives
that they are able to buy their heart’s desire, a little cabin on an acre of land upon a hill in Grizzly Flats. Boy, are they ecstatic!
They go to the furniture store in Placerville where cabin décor is sold. They furnish the log edifice with the best that money can
buy, within reason of course! (Remember, they spent most of their hard-earned cash for the cabin and land!) They put nice oval rugs
on the floor, and now the husband is able to hang his trophy deer head that sat in the garage in the city for many years. It was a
three-point buck and was the largest deer killed in Plumas County the year he was able to bag it. These folks are somewhere in the
middle politically, so where do they plop themselves down, right in the middle of Conservative Country where they are now afraid to
say anything about the candidate they would prefer. Miraculously, they are only able to go to their cozy nest on free weekends, which
to their surprise came to be about one weekend a month. There are baseball games for junior, dance lessons for Sally, and baby has
been enrolled in swimming lessons that are only available on Saturdays. Such is life in the fast lane!
“We must have a microwave,”
the non-camping wife complains. “We’ve gotta have a big-screen t.v.” the husband declares emphatically! “What about WiFi?” the son
implores! And, poor Sally and the baby just make do with what the others have.
The wife ‘must’ have some plants, even though water
is scarce and the land is pretty arid. “Deer are eating our plants,” she cries! “Well, we do live in the forest,” the father replies.
After purchasing the latest in smart phones, which only work part-time up in the mountains, they all become angry at the device
declaring, “Why can’t we have what we want up here?” Is this why people move up to the mountains? They want the solitude so craved
by millions, but yearn for all the comforts afforded by cities! As a result, their serenity has gone berserk!
They still do not
enjoy the fresh, mountain air! They still have the stench of the dogs and cats that they have to take with them wherever they go.
(It is a requirement in Grizzly Flats that people pick up the droppings of their animals) This family would rather have their animals
go in special boxes inside the house and get rid of it all at the same time. So what do they do? They bag it up and it ends up in
their garbage cans in the city to fill up landfills there. All that can be heard above the clamor of the animals and the children,
is the huge big-screened t.v. There are no hikes in the woods! No picnics by Steely Creek and Jenkinson Lake! By the time this family
drive up to the mountains, stopping every hour or so, that kids and animals can relieve themselves, stopping to eat a couple of times,
this family is too tired to do anything except play games on their devices and dream of solitude.
Is this why we move to the mountains?