"I will lift my eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth." Psalms 121:1,2
Why Cotopaxi? Was it the great Sangre Christo Range of Mountains to the south and west?,
Or the red cliffs at Cotopaxi? Partly, the deep blue skies, the dry wind that blows, the sun that shines most every day? The beauty of the Arkansas River Canyon although some one named it The Big Horn Canyon. The Arkansas River Canyon it still is!
We leased, and then bought a gas and service station there. It kept Leon happy with his constant changing and building. In his spare time he bought or found old engines which he repaired, rebuilt, and got them running. A happy husband makes a happy wife.
Thinking that a change from Public Health might be nice, I started working for Dr. Cole who was starting a new office in Canon City under the Nat'l Health Service Corp. He had ordered supplies, and box after box were delivered to an empty office space. The doctor said put them where they belong. So I took the challenge and put them where they might be easy to use! He hired a receptionist and a bookkeeper and we just all worked together and learned what to do. I did not like the billing and coding department at all, and after that wherever I worked, I said, " just call some one and ask them how it is done."
Dr. Cole suggested that I go back to school to be a Nurse Practitioner. With his help and lots of phone calls, I was admited to a class at the Health Science Center in Denver . From that I learned to be Adult Nurse Practitioner. Since it was a Family Practice, I was soon seeing the young and the old. When the doctor had served his time with the Nat'l Health Service Corp. I was looking for a new job.
In 1977, we moved again, lock, stock, and barrel as they say, to Darrington, Washington. It was a logging community in a rain forest. Now THAT was a change. The first three weeks it rained day and night. Every time I woke up I could hear the rain. If you have never been in a rain forest, it is something to experience! The blackberries grow above the barn roofs, and moss all over the trees, ferns everywhere, and there are slugs too. The magnolias and azeleas are just beautiful along with fields of tulips and daffodils!
We had been there about a month and Leon had open heart surgery with 5 bypasses. It was quite different in 1977 than now. But he lived another 15 years so it was worth it.
While there, the clinic hired 2 N.P's. and they gave us liberal time for continued education. It was there that I continued my education and became a Family Nurse Practitoner certified by the ANA. I always enjoyed learning more.
We were on call, for any emergency after hours. The lumber companies hired a helicopter to fly out any injurys on the job site. They would bring the helicopter to the clinic and pick up which ever N.P. was working and take us with them. Another experience!