Place Where You Live:

Boise, ID

Balloons over Boise

I live in the eye of convergence. My home rests on an ancient reclaimed floodplain. Before three damns tamed it, the Boise River ambled over this valley, expanding and contracting in response to the snowpack in mountains that wrinkle northward toward Canada. The river distributed fine grains of sand, silt, and clay in the valley, creating fertile farm land.

To the south, high desert sage country stretches toward Nevada, punctuated by streams that dry to a trickle as the summer sun sucks up moisture and by low bluffs and mineral-filled mountains that continue to lure fortune-seekers. Mostly federally-owned, this land is arid and lightly populated. Raptors, small mammals, snakes, lizards, and insects share their home with cattle who shuffle through the sage, seeking forage and strategically located wells. Scattered herds of wild horses subsist on a mixture of blue, fescue and cheat grass.  

My home is also nestled into the seat of political and social convergence. Boise, home of the state capital, throbs with divergent opinions and needs.  The community has expanded with an influx from the east and west coasts, as well as, from refugees and immigrants, who bring with them unfamiliar customs, foods, faiths, and needs. Voices of a new urban golfing, cycling, and wheatgrass crowd, drawn to booming business, education, and recreation opportunities,  clash with voices of the rest of a red state, comprised largely of traditionalists living off the land: farmers, ranchers, miners, and loggers.

Forces of nature press us to action. Summer heat pushes city dwellers toward water, while winter inversions push recreationalists to the mountains  above the haze. Meanwhile, farmers worry about unpredictable weather and markets.  As snow rushes from the mountains, divergent voices converge to manage the runoff.  Save precious water for boaters or funnel it into the fields? Attorneys mediate and legislators negotiate— a Sisyphean attempt at balance.

I live in a dynamic environment that stimulates artistic inspiration and stretches traditional boundaries. My life is enriched by nearby wilderness, diverging opinions, new cultures, cutting-edge arts, and exciting new technologies. Converging forces, both environmental and social, inspire constant rejuvenation of the human spirit.