The world is so enticing, so tempting to explore. Once young ones graduate high school, they are pushed out into the unknown, ready to soak up every bit of adventure they can. Every young adult’s goal is to ‘get out’, meet new people; bored of the home they grew up to know too well.
And while at 20 years young I couldn’t wait one more second to get out of my hometown, 2 years later & two states away, Iowa will always be #1 in my heart.
As the saying goes, distance makes the heart grow fonder. I thought I would leave Iowa & never look back, I had absolutely no desire to step foot in the state again, believing that my happiness couldn’t be attainable there.
What a silly child I was.
Every day I am in Colorado, I am reminded of the beauty of Iowa & its kindhearted humans that inhibit there. Iowa will always be home, and here’s just a few reasons why.
- The Silence
- I suppose I can’t speak for all the small, isolated mountain towns of CO, but living in a suburb city of Denver always reminds me of what Iowa has over some; the quietness. There is no hustle and bustle of stop and go traffic, people scurrying to work. The ‘rush hour’ in Colorado is almost all day, from people going to their jobs, to the overloaded amount of tourists scurrying to the beautiful mountain state. There’s traffic almost everywhere you go, I can’t pull onto a gravel road in 2 minutes to enjoy some solitude. It probably doesn’t help that I grew up in the country, ten miles away from the nearest town. I had acres of land to explore nature and its seclusion.
- The Simplicity
- I am not a city person, as I found out. Not that I thought I was, but moving next to Denver definitely reassured me. I am a person that doesn’t need much to be happy. I don’t need a downtown strip of bars and storefronts. I don’t need a nightlife or a vast amount of people to surround myself with. My personality is definitely a homebody, all I need are my loved ones and open land. I would rather have a couple beers in the backyard with my friends/family around a campfire, than party in the concrete jungle. A night in on a porch staring out at the open sky as the sun sets sounds like my cup of tea. Which brings me to my next one –
- The Open Sky
- Out of all the places I’ve visited, Iowa hands down has the best sunsets. People can make fun of the flat lands & corn fields all they want, but they create a canvas for beautiful masterpieces in the sky. The sky is eminently bigger, the sunsets can put on a show for all of us watching. Being up against the base of the mountains leads to a quick sunset, leaving in minutes and not being able to give much of a show.
- The Cost of Living
- Not to sound lame, but this is HUGE! With Colorado having the “Green Rush” of legal marijuana and the mountains of endless activities, Colorado is ridiculously expensive with people flooding in to live here. Average rent for a 1-bedroom is $1400, and that’s not a nice apartment either. Houses in Denver are selling at an average of a half a million dollars, and those houses would go for under $100,000 in Iowa. Gas, groceries, about everything is a little more expensive than the Midwest. And although the minimum wage is higher, it’s not enough to be able to live comfortably here. Unless you’re working multiple jobs or live with multiple people.
- The People
- Now, I will admit this was one of the bigger reasons I wanted to leave Iowa, I wanted to broaden my horizons & meet new people, more open-minded people. And although there are definitely some close-minded people in the Midwest, that is rapidly changing. And, that’s not all that matters about people. Iowans are some of the kindest souls I’ve come across. It’s the little things like being able to fill up my gas tank first and then go in and pay…can’t do that in the big city. No one trusts anyone in cities. Or going into my bank & the teller knowing me by name and asking about my family. I could drive on my gravel road and wave at every single stranger driving by, and they’d wave right back with a smile. I admit I like being a nobody here, it allowed me to grow into myself and find my soul without feeling the need to keep hold to who I used to be, how everybody else knew me as. But the feeling of being a part of a community brings a warmth to your heart, something that is hard to obtain with Denver’s population of 2.9 million people.
Last but not least, ANDERSON ERICKSON DAIRY! I need it in my life.
I don’t know what life holds for Kolin & myself. I don’t know where we’ll be in a year from now, or 10 years from now. But I do know one thing, Iowa will always be tempting to go back to, and Iowa will always be #1 in my heart.
until next time,