3 Things PC Has Given Me

Thursday, February 5, 2015

I've been thinking a lot about Park City lately. Why I'm so drawn to it, why I keep coming back, why, since I took myself there a little over a year ago, I've been so absolutely obsessed. And I've come up with three reasons why PC keeps drawing me in (aside from all my amazing Utah bloggers - email me about them if you want to know more):

1. Nostalgia: The last "vacation" we went on as a family was to Bozeman for my childhood BFF's wedding. Whenever I describe Bozeman, I say it's like two mountain ranges hugging you. My dad was pretty sick from chemo and radiation and we stayed only for the ceremony. At the time, I was upset to miss the reception, but I never would have stayed without him. He was everything, especially then. It was a big step for me to figure out how to be less selfish. Clearly, I haven't mastered that yet, but for him I would have sacrificed most anything, even my ice cream.

I've grown up in the West, not particularly in the mountains, but there's something about them that I find absolutely majestic. I'm not a snow sportswoman (are you surprised?), but fires, books and cocoa are all things I can get behind. Those, and snow outfits. PC reminds me of happy times I spent with my family. We didn't go on many family vacations, so spending time together in the mountains holds a very special place for me. My dad's ultimate dream was to build a small log cabin on our family's property north of Moscow, ID, and while it's not exactly a mountain, it sure felt like one as a seven-year-old holding tightly to my dad's waist as he four-wheeled us around around the "Little Woods" as my family called them.

2. Transition: When I took myself to PC for the first time a little over a year ago (I've been back twice since), I had made myself a promise that I wouldn't just sit at my hotel eating room service chicken fingers and watching Property Brothers marathons when I was alone on work travel. Sure, drinking Polygamy Porter at the No Name Saloon by myself was a little awkward, but it was also empowering, and it was completely worth any tinge of anxiety I suppressed about being alone in a place previously foreign to me.

I'd never really work traveled alone before, and I had glamorized it in my head thinking This is what my parents did all my life. This is why we have so many magnets. It all sounded so cool, but it was pretty lonely. And without friends in a place I didn't know, I didn't want the aloneness to win. I wanted to see where I was, learn about it and be as in it as I could be. For the first time in my life, I was learning to really be comfortable hanging out with myself outside my laying (lying? Grandma, help!)-on-the-couch-watching-Bravo comfort zone.

3. (Dis)Connection: When you live and work in a field that can very easily consume your 24/7, you have to make a much more conscious effort to disconnect. In the mountains, I am forced to disconnect. I naturally take deeper breaths. I feel more connected to the world around me and less to my phone. I feel small in something so big and looming, but ironically warm.

One thing my dad always told me was, "Always make time to play." Not only can I play in PC - it's only a 40 minute drive from the SLC airport and one of the most popular resort towns in the world - but I can also feel connected to the universe in a very authentic way, and to my dad's always-relevant advice. The only other place that makes me feel this way is Chelan. My philosophy about these places is the same one I have with jeans: When you find one that fits, get as many as often as you can.

Don't mind me - just adjusting the selfie stick.
Plus, this last time, I took my new selfie stick for a run and it. Rocked. My. World. 

Where do you go when you want to get away but connect to the core of your being? Where are your favorite places in the world? I'm always looking for beautiful spots that inspire deep breaths.

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