I am suppose to write about my home for a class. It is a songwriting class, and rather than write about, I am suppose to brainstorm all my thoughts on to a page. Writing down whatever first comes to mind. It could be as simple as the view from my window, and as complex as describing the smell of fresh rain on dry dirt roads. A smell so good that it now gives me goosebumps when I think about it.

I find it kind of ironic that right as my February homesickness started to set in, I was assigned this writing exercise. Home is a weirdly personal subject for me. In understanding where and how I grew up, one gains a great deal of insight on who I am and why I am that why. But even stranger, home use to bring me no comfort. I wanted out. Out of my house, out of my body, out of my mind, so, logically, I thought I needed to get out of my town.

I guess in retrospect I did need to get away for a little. I needed some perspective, and a change in environment. I can't say if the change I made was far better, but I got time. Time to be by myself, time to think, reflect, and ultimately grow up. In this span of me being gone I realized how truly lucky I am to have grown up in the place that I did. Surrounded by nature, beauty, and a ski culture that cherishes the value, endurance, and strength that the human body provides.

When I think of home right now, I think most of its incredible healing powers that are hidden within the valley's sprawling meadows, and staggering peaks. The fresh air and endless outdoor activities remind me that humans are made to be outside. They are made to run, jump, and dash through trees, and swim and squeal in icy lake water. In being away I discovered that, in growing up, my eyes had become accustom to the fairy book like environment to which they were subject to. The familiarity dimming the sight that lay before me. On coming home from my first year I college I legitimately had an internal freak out when I saw the mountains. I felt like I was seeing them in a way that I never had before. My love and appreciation instantly sky rocketed.

Something that really represents a past chapter in my life is my many walks up my hill with my dog. (That's what I am going to write this new song about). Now I walked from my house, up about a mile to the top of the hill I lived on, on my road, named, Bronco Road, almost every day for 8 years.e Sometimes for a span of weeks, I would only listen to the same few songs every time I walked up that hill. One time I ran up it in the middle of a snowstorm, barefoot, after getting in a fight (I don't know what over) with my Mom. I can't think much about my mom these days, or I will cry, February. I've walked up that hill while sobbing, but if you were to drive by on a happy day you would probably catch me dancing. Or maybe calling after my rabid, but sweet dog Lady. Sometimes I would act out entire movie plots. I especially loved one plot where a girl in a futuristic dystopia is walking in the streets of a polluted and dull city, when all of a sudden, she passes through an invisible barrier. She is then transported to the woods where she sees trees, dirt, a sherbet-colored sky, and distant, frosted, mountain tops all for the first time. I think that would be one of the craziest experiences ever, and then I remember some people go through a similar experience when they come to my town. Again, that humbles me, and reminds me to try and see, rather, appreciate, the simplistic and natural beauty that spans the environment that is my hometown.