09 Oct The Cabin – Beulah
Rustling leaves and a gust of wind wakes me. As I rub my weary eyes, I peer out into the wilderness. A squirrel stares back, quietly munching its seeds from atop the bird feeder. 300 foot pine trees surround me everywhere that I look. I quickly get up from the fold-out bed and hold my hands to the surrounding screen while peering out from the porch. The sweet serenity of nature surrounds me. There is no better place to spend a few summer days. The sun is just now starting to peak out over majestic Mt. Nebo and a gentle deer gaits through the front yard. I can’t believe that this place is real. Of course when I first arrived at the cabin, I missed my TV and my video games, but this place has taken my heart.
I swear that I saw a black bear stroll right by the porch while I slept there. I feel so lucky that I got to sleep on the porch, but tonight I switch with my brother and sleep by the fireplace in the living room. It could definitely be worse. The cabin is quaint and simple with everything you could ever need or want. After a good previous day’s work raking pine cones, cleaning gutters, turning on water valves, and stocking cabins, we are ready for a Beulah summer! I envy my Dad for he was able to spend many whole summers in this beautiful place, but I am thankful that I experienced it. Today, Grandpa, my Dad, my brother, and I will hike Mt. Nebo, raise the American flag, and go fishing. I wake up later than everyone but my brother and stroll into the kitchen to see Grandpa, Grandma, and my parents sitting at the dining room table drinking coffee and reading the newspaper.
Shortly after, I sit at the table, my brother arrives and we eat grapefruit, eggs, bacon, and a small glass of orange juice for breakfast. We all rise, clean up the kitchen and get prepared for our hike. With flag in hand, we head out of the front gate with a wooden plaque marked “The Hollorans”. As we walk over the bridge through the Beulah valley on our way to the trail head, my Grandpa and Father admire the creek and point to certain fishing spots. When we reach the trail head and begin hiking I can’t help but admire my family and this wonderful place. My Grandpa is in great shape and hikes with ease, while my Dad grabs a lizard without even hesitating. I was in awe, at my age and how I normally saw my Dad at home, this was a totally new person. My Brother and I joke, laugh, and complain all the way to the top of what seemed like a 5 hour hike. In reality, it must’ve taken only 45 minutes to an hour. The view from the top was miraculous, we were the kings of the Beulah valley. My Grandpa pressed the flag into the stand that had previously been set and pointed down the mountain from where we had come. In the distance, we could just glimpse the cabins and my Grandma waving a dish towel between the majestic pine trees within the valley.
The journey down was less tiring and the fun of planting the flag stuck with us. That American flag would be waving in Beulah all summer thanks to us! From the bottom of the trail head, it’s only a short walk back to the cabin and when we arrive, Grandma is almost done with lunch. We all eat a quick lunch and then we get suited up for fishing. We all head out to Middle Creek and get into it. I wasn’t even old enough to have started fly fishing yet but I still remember catching my first fish in that creek with my little spinner rod. It was a tiny little brown trout, but to me, it may as well have been a 20 incher. Seeing that fish squirming in my Dad’s hand as he helped me unhook it gave me a funny feeling. I touched the fish and thought it was one of the coolest things I had ever done. My brother was learning to fly fish with a very old, extra bamboo rod. For some reason, I was so intrigued with that yellow rod and its very outdated reel. We all trudged back up to the creek after an afternoon of fishing, I don’t remember if we caught anything else, but I remember being with my loved ones very vividly.
That’s not even the best part! We ate dinner, Grandma’s famous homemade apple sauce was on the table. Mmm! Then we would always have a nice evening playing Sequence, Chinese Checkers or some other great strategy board game. The legendary game where Grandpa and I came back in a game of Sequence against my Brother and Grandma to win 3-2 still rests in my mind. The feeling of being in such a beautiful place, surrounded by people you love, and experiencing such peace, is indescribable. I still think about those summer nights by the fireplace, or on the porch in Beulah. A good ol’ Beulah Burger in my belly and a great Beulah T-shirt from the general store on my back.
This is a small representation of some of the feelings I felt as a young kid visiting my Grandparents in Beulah, CO growing up. Unfortunately my Grandpa passed away when I was in 8th grade but to this day my Grandpa, Joe Holloran, is one of my biggest heroes. The work ethic that my Grandpa carried throughout his life was second to none. My Grandma is one of the strongest people I have ever met and I love her to death. My Holloran Uncles, Aunts, and Cousins also made Beulah a very special place and I have very fond memories of all of you in Beulah as well. As the cabins are no longer owned by the Hollorans after generations, I wanted to write something in tribute to Beulah, my Great Uncle Fred, and my Grandpa.
I don’t always say some of these things out loud because it’s not easy for me to speak up; but I love these writings because it’s a great outlet for expressing my thoughts and emotions. I like sharing my experiences and feelings with you all, hopefully it can inspire or comfort someone else too.
Feel free to leave your criticism or thoughts in the comments, and thanks again for reading.