Yesterday I wrote about trying to find the cabin near Estes Park that once belonged to my college roommate’s family. Today, with directions from my friend, I was able to find it.
Part of the problem, in addition to the havoc that time plays with memory, is the property now belongs to the National Park Service and the road to it is no longer maintained. After a few false starts and accepting that I would not see a sign with the road’s name, I left my car by the side of the highway. Soon I was hiking along an old dirt trail and excitedly recognizing vistas and rocks.
When I got to the cabin, there were three other visitors having a picnic lunch. We got to talking and it turns out they knew the story of the Kansas City schoolteacher, Anna Wolfrom, who made her way to Estes Park and homesteaded the property in 1907. Since the story of Anna had had an influence on us, it seemed almost magical to hear it again. They suggested that I stop by the Estes Park Museum and check out the small exhibit on women homesteaders from the area, which I did.
After they left I sat in the shade, sketched the cabin, trees, and mountains, and reflected on all the good luck that led from the gutsy homesteader who built a cabin herself, to my friend’s generous family, to our wonderful friendship and stay at the cabin, and now the chance to see and paint it again.
My friend said, “Purple Mountain Majesty,” after I sent her a photo of this sketch, and that sums it up for me too
This is a 12 X 12- inch gouache sketch on black paper.