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Peace and Quiet 
If you look through old guest books in the area you'll find lots of references to the peace and quiet and tranquillity. Then you look at the dates: 1920, 1930.
In a letter in the WIND last month someone else mentioned the beautiful silence of our valley.
I wonder if they've been here lately.
What with ATVs, dirt bikes, chain saws, snow mobiles, jets, cars of all sorts, (I won't even get started on the dreaded barking dog problem), our peaceful valley (and even Peaceful Valley) is no longer a place of unbroken beautiful silences.
Last summer I was reading on the screened porch and found I couldn't concentrate because of an ominous thumping sound which turned out to be a stereo system almost half a mile away, played by someone who had thoughtfully decided to entertain the valley with all the doors and windows open.
I'm as guilty as the next person. I can remember spending some long hours bent over a nice, quiet cross-cut saw, and I now have a noisy little gas job and I have no intention of going back to stone age wood cutting, thank you very much.
As usual, there's a price to pay for progress, whether it's having ugly poles all over the place for electricity or a big bill for improved fire protection.
The result is that many of us run around trying to hang onto our cake, munching all the while. Hundred watt per channel stereos are nice, but you're going to have to put up with a little rock and roll among the columbines.
Still, there are some moments, on a chilly morning or in the dead of night, when those beautiful silences still hang in the air; a stillness so vivid you can almost see it. The kind of thing that made all the folks who read the WIND decide to have a little place in the mountains.
© 1985 – 2003, David E. Steiner
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