There are bears all over town.
Outside stores, banks, libraries, office buildings, everywhere.
They are all the same bear - the exact same bear - and yet they are all decorated differently.
Some are painted to acknowledge Cody's western and wildlife roots, while others such as the one above (photographed outside the library) are whimsical and great fun to enjoy as you pass by.
There are actually four of these same bears located at the library (two of which I only noticed today), and I will try and find a link sometime soon that provides information on what this group of grizzlies are all about.
The short story is that they were the brainchild of a local a few years ago when fund raising was taking place to raise money for the new library.
Wonderful creations unique to this small western town and I will take more pictures of them as I come across them from now on...............
LC, James and I stopped at this park earlier in the week
It was windy and absolutely freezing, and even though we had planned on walking around both of the small lakes and then walking on the short trails of this residential park we quickly abandoned our plans.
Just too cold.
Even though Spring is officially here the weather in Cody is incredibly changeable.
Sunny and warm. Cloudy and cold. And inevitably windy by mid-afternoon.
It is not uncommon to look east and see blue sky and sunshine, and look west back towards the mountains leading to Yellowstone and see ominous looking clouds.
We got all of about 100 feet from the truck before calling it quits, and quickly drove by the lakes thinking only of the warmth of the truck and then the house.
Predictably the park was empty of people, and the trees are still very much empty of leaves.
Spring - but not quite the flowers growing, bird chirping, grass growing, running in shorts kind of Spring that everyone is still waiting for...............
On that same very cold and windy day we drove out to Buffalo Bill State Park for a quick visit.
There is not much there - at least not much that I could see in the fog and thick grey clouds.
What I DID see was lots and lots of lake - this will be my kayaking place.
In Juneau I was used to looking at low tides and high tides. Here in land-locked Cody Wyoming I look to see how much water the dam has released.........
The entrance to the public library in town.
You can see the whimsical bear outside near the library driveway and parking lot.
Immediately after you enter there is one more bear, some beautiful art work, lots of windows and very comfortable chairs. A great place for relaxing and quietly reading.
And then the huge and well equipped main area.
The library is right across the parking lot from the recreation center and ice arena.
While I am still waiting for my Internet to be hooked up at the house we have moved into (you would think we had moved 50 miles outside of town instead of 5 miles for all the difficulty we have had in getting some of our utilities hooked up) I have been working out and then walking over to this library to blog and research and check emails.
I really really like both places, and they are quickly becoming familiar and comfortable places for me.
Quiet places to think and to regroup.
Some days I think I am doing fine.
Other days...........not so much.
Quiet places to think and to regroup are good things............
Pictures hanging from the ceiling in the library main entrance.
As I write this I am sitting at a desk near a bank of windows looking out over a grey sky and partially obscured mountains.
I can also see a very large dry pond that encircles about 2/3 of the library building itself. I have to believe that this dry pond will be filled with water very soon, and the large planters near where the pond will be promise me that this will be a very beautiful place this summer..........
The house we are living in is small but functional, clean and quiet.
There is a caretaker of sorts who lives on the property.
An elderly, tough as nails, likes her beer, knows her way around both a firearm and a circular saw, swears like a sailor lady who takes care of the horses in return for mostly free rent.
She also used to be a cook on various regional ranches when she was younger and has taken to cooking on occasion for us.
I was very wary of this lady at first.
I am very wary of everyone right now.
But so far she seems to be exactly what she seems to be - an elderly tough-as-nails woman who is alone, making do as best she can, with a great sense of humor, and who genuinely seems to be good and decent.
LC and I, despite our promise to each other before moving into the house that we would not help the old woman around the horse farm because we are paying rent and are under no obligation to assist with farm work, feel a desire to help out anyway.
My Mountain Boy and I talked about it the other day and realized that we wanted to help out not because we felt obligated, but because we wanted to do something nice for someone.
For someone (who by all appearances) has been nice to us.
I want to consciously try and move out of defensive mode and am trying - but I have been working in a battle zone for 14 months and it is hard to switch it off...........
The landlord has "stuff" piled in different places around the 5 acre property - sheds, old trailers, wood, gates, snow mobiles etc. and if we owned this property it would need a good deal of cleaning up.
But for now this quiet, functional and clean home fulfills our needs until we find our feet again - which we continue to do more and more every day.
In a beautiful area outside of town.
It is also $800 a month cheaper than what we were paying for the Unabomber Cabin in Juneau.
Random pictures of the property and the area surrounding it, taken at different times of the day.
This is the view from the small front porch...........
Taken a couple of minutes walk up the rutted out but wide open dirt road...........
We are surrounded by mountains and horse pastures...........
Heart Mountain follows us everywhere we go...........
The horses on the property.......
And one very pregnant girl - due in the next couple of weeks.
She is separated from the other horses until after she gives birth........
I know that Cody historically gets a surge in snowfall during March and into April.
And I know that the forecast for the next few days is calling for cold, wet, snow.
But it was still a surprise this morning to wake up to this.
No wind. Temperature right at 32. It was a very quiet and still and mild morning and while still in pajamas I grabbed my jacket and camera and ran outside to take these pictures..............
The back of the house.............
My LC drinking coffee and enjoying the snow as much as I was...........
A beautiful old wagon in the front yard................