Featured photo for The Back Yard

The Back Yard

“Felix has been all bitter about how much time he’s been needing to work on the yard,” Tori observed the other day, laughing.

Okay! It is true that I have not particularly enjoyed spending time every week pulling weeds the last couple of months, especially after not having to spend one minute doing so from October through early April (one of the nice things about Colorado winters). In times like these, I can totally see how a flat or a townhouse makes sense, where one is not responsible for maintaining a yard. It’s not like I need the extra space of a single-family home when there is only one of me.

However, there is one thing I really love about my home that seems to be hard to find in a flat or townhome around here: the views.

Now, most of the time I regard the views in front of my home—of the mountains, the lake, and my neighbors’ colorful and well-manicured landscapes—as superior to those of the rear. Nevertheless, the views out to the back yard aren’t half-bad either, even while I sit on my butt while trying to figure out how to finish landscaping it. See the photo of it in its current state, with its aspens, pines, other trees/shrubs I do not know the names of and, yes, weeds!

Then there are those special moments—courtesy of the “if you don’t like the weather, wait ten minutes” mountain climate—when the views out the back are rather amazing. For example, on this year’s Fourth of July, I was stunned to see this: a rainbow soaring out of it. (Click on photos to enlarge.)

An hour later, then there were the not-so-unusual eastern-Colorado (and Kansas) thunderstorms in the distance, which brought virtually no rain to Fort Collins but put on a lightning show that my friend Josh (who served in the middle east) says “looks just like Iraq getting bombed!” Or—being more of the “war sucks” mindset—I like to compare more to celebratory fireworks. Below is a (poor) depiction of it—trying to time the camera just right for one of these lightning flashes is hard even when they appear every 2-3 seconds…

Then, an hour after that, there were REAL fireworks, courtesy of the Fort Collins Country Club launching them a mile away. How splendid! My neighbor Dee told me about this last year, but since I was in Vietnam that July, this was the first year I actually got to witness them from the deck.

Other heartwarming sights occur when the sun dips just below the tips of the mountains and the wispy and puffy summer cumulus turns pink. Unfortunately I don’t have a photo for this. Sorry.

In conclusion, even with weeds the back yard still looks pretty nice. Or so I try to remind myself of that while I continue to sit on my butt while struggling to bust out a decent landscape design.

On the Fourth of July I was surprised to see this rainbow.
Rainbow over the back yard.
Then there were flashes of lightnight every three seconds in the distance towards Kansas, like fireworks.
An hour later, there were real fireworks!
My back yard could use some work, but there is definite potential.